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Vinification and ageing

The crop, picked plot by plot at optimal ripeness, arrives progressively at the estate’s new technical facilities inaugurated for the 2017 harvest. It is then de-stemmed and sorted.

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Vinification and ageing

The new fermentation cellar containing temperature-controlled stainless steel vats has been designed to receive the grapes via a gravity-flow system. Pump-overs and manual pigeages then take place in tronco-conical vats. The solids naturally form a cap at the top, and the must below it begins to take on colour. Fruit aromas invade the cellars as the process of fermentation begins. The skins stay in contact with the skins for a period of 30 to 45 days.

The new technical facilities introduced by the dynamic new owner, Madame An, have provided the means to produce higher quality wines at Château Richelieu. Cellarmaster Cyril Meyrou and his crew are able to vinify with greater precision, and Stéphane Toutoundji, a consultant winemaker and partner at Oenoteam, is on hand to advise.

The barrel cellar, where the malo-lactic fermentation and the ageing process take place, brings a touch of Tuscany to Fronsac with its untreated wood décor and gentle green colours that create an air of nobility. The wine rests in barrels here for a year or more before the blending takes place for the three wines of the estate: Château Richelieu, the flagship brand; La Favorite de Richelieu, a strict selection of lots and with longer oak ageing; and La Cuvée Royale, a special plot-selection producing a wine with flesh and power and built for long ageing in bottle.