Château d’Arche: Vineyards

The vineyards of Château d’Arche are, along with those of Château Lamothe-Guignard, some of the highest in the commune of Sauternes. They surround the château and other buildings. Between 1 and 2 kilometres to the west runs the Ciron, the river that is frequently cited as essential to the development of botrytis, which heads vaguely northwards towards Barsac before it empties into the Dordogne.

Château d'Arche

The estate is fairly extensive, with 53 hectares dedicated to the vine, although this includes parcels dedicated to wines other than Sauternes. The slopes are largely south-facing. Underfoot the soil is varied across the estate, with 70% of the vineyard being dominated by gravel, these being the sections closest to the top of the hill on which Château d’Arche sits. Then, down the slope running towards the village of Sauternes itself, the gravel subsoil gives way to clay and limestone, which together account for 25% of the vineyard. At the foot of the slope there is a small band of silt which accounts for the remaining 5%. This silty soil no doubt reflects the presence of a small tributary of the Ciron which runes east-west here, between the vineyards of Château d’Arche and the town of Sauternes.

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