Château Charmail: Vineyards
The commune of St-Seurin de Cadourne is one worth exploring; this is where we find the last gasp of the Haut-Médoc’s great gravel banks, separated from the commune of St Estèphe just to the south by the Estey d’un, the drainage channel that runs east into the Gironde. The vineyards of Château Charmail are only 600 metres north of this channel, and are only 1200 metres from the waters of the aforementioned estuary. The value of this gravel croupe is known to many, although largely through the wines of Château Sociando-Mallet, the leading domaine in the appellation. Château Charmail lies just a few hundred metres down the road from the entrance to the Sociando-Mallet estate, the vineyards facing off against one another from opposite sides of the road.
The Château Charmail vineyard comprises 28 hectares in a single block (below left, with St Estèphe in the distance), the soils underfoot a mix of gravel (below right), clay, sand and colluvial slip. The varieties planted are dominated by Merlot at 45%, not at all uncommon for the more northerly vineyards where the soils can be cooler and the climate a little less favourable, followed up by 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. Some replanting was carried out as recently as 2010, when 6 hectares were replaced, 3.5 hectares with Cabernet Sauvignon and 2.5 hectares with Petit Verdot, so there are some very young vines coming online here.Please log in to continue reading: