Château Lilian Ladouys

France, Bordeaux

This lovely Cru Bourgeois Exceptionnel in Saint Estèphe enjoys an enviable location on the Cos plateau, near to Calon, Montrose and Cos d'Estournel itself. The 80 hectare vineyard is 80% on gravel with a clay-limestone base, 20% on limestone-clay and is planted at 8500-10000 vines per hectare, with 50% Merlot, 45% Cabernet-Sauvignon, 4% Petit Verdot, 1% Cabernet Franc.

The history of the estate can be traced back as far as 1654, when the property was in the ownership of Jacques de Bercoyan, a Bordeaux magistrate. By this time it was already known as La Doys, an obvious precursor to the Ladouys name of today.

The exciting modern history of the property began in 2008 when it was bought by Jacky Lorenzetti, and the family's investment was rewarded with the Cru Bourgeois Exceptionnel classification in 2018. Since the purchase there has been many more deals to consolidate a coherent vineyard from the many parcels.

Lilian Ladouys is managed by Emmanuel Cruse, the consultant oenologist is Eric Boissenot. The work in the vineyard aims to make sure there is an even spread of bunches on the vines, and that these are well-ventilated (leaf-thinning). The earth is ploughed, with either sowing of ground-cover between the vines, or leaving nature to its own devices, depending on the vigour of each parcel. The grapes are harvested by hand, with sorting as bunches and again by grape after the de-stemming, after which the they go into the vats by gravity for a cold maceration prior to the fermentation. Extraction is managed by gentle délestage. The wine is aged in barrel, with 40% new wood each year.

The vineyard certified 'Haute Valeur Envionmentale' level 3. From 2020 they began conversion to organics with 20% of the vineyard, and all being well will complete conversion in 2023.