|Classification||Cru Bourgeois Supérieur|
Most of the en primeur hype is reserved for the members of the exclusive club of crus classés (literally classed growths) that occupy the top tier of Bordeaux. This club has been set in stone for getting on for 170 years, with the 59 top châteaux of the Médoc (plus one from Graves) in the Left Bank region south of the Garonne River being fixed in divisions from Premier Cru (the top five estates including Latour and Lafite) to Cinquième Cru (the bottom 18) since the ranking was drawn up for the Exposition Universelle de Paris in 1855. It’s hard, especially in good vintages (such as 2020 seems, on my limited tasting, to be), to find value in that Top 60. But there are excellent wines to be found in the next level down, with the best Cru Bourgeois, such as Cambon La Pelouse’s 2015, offering classically elegant yet deep red wines that will age and improve for many years. David Williams, The Observer (May 2021)
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From an estate right on the border of Margaux, the 2015 Cambon la Pelouse checks in as 50% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, all brought up in 35% new barrels. It has beautiful complexity in its spicy oak, cedarwood, and black raspberry and currant aromas and flavors. These all carry to a medium-bodied red that has a seamless, ultra-fine texture, good concentration, and a great finish. It’s a beautiful, incredibly high-quality wine that’s already drinking brilliantly, yet I suspect it will shine for another decade. Rating: 91 Jeb Dunnuck, www.jebdunnuck.com (Mar 2019)
The 2015 Cambon La Pelouse is radiant and full of character. Silky tannins wrap around a core of ripe dark cherry, cedar, smoke, tobacco, grilled herb and licorice. Drink this juicy, inviting Haut Médoc over the next few years. The blend is 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot and 5% Petit Verdot. Drinking range: 2018 - 2023 Rating: 89 Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com (Feb 2018)
Big black fruits and a ton of ripe tannins make this a dramatic wine that would be hard not to like. The balance is really good and that makes it delicious right now. If it were a bit more complex it would rate even more highly. Rating: 91 James Suckling, www.jamessuckling.com (Feb 2018)
Château Cambon la Pelouse
One of the longest-standing producers with exports to England dating back to the end of the 17th Century, the 38 hectare Château Cambon La Pelouse contributed substantially in the past to building the reputation in France and abroad of Médoc wines. The 35 hectare estate is on the outskirts of Macau and counts the Margaux estates of Giscours and Cantemerle as neighbours. With an average annual production of 250,000 bottles, the estate is planted 52% Merlot, 44% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% Petit Verdot to a vine density of 7,000 vines per hectare with an average age of 30 years for the vines. The terroir is composed of sandy gravels which provides effective drainage. This ensures a consistent production of elegant medium-bodied wines which have been praised by Robert Parker as “one of my favorite estates from the southern part of the Medoc”.
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