Certified Organic (2012)
Variety: 100% Malbec
Country, Region: France, South West France
100% Malbec coming from the limestone lateau and Mindel high terraces. Robin and Jules are Pascal Verhaeghes two sons and embody the future of Château du Cèdre. Having studied viticulture, Robin has been working in the vineyard with his uncle, Jean-Marc Verhaeghe for the last four years, where he's been "innoculated" with the culture of the estate and its close relationship with Mother Nature.
Jules, also a student of viticulture and business, gained his experience of winemaking over 4 different harvests in 4 different regions and is graudally taking over in the cellars. Both care deeply about their region, its terroir and the Malbec grape, are fervent environmentalists and aspire above all to continuing the family adventure!
'Juveniles' is their first wine : Malbec based, vinifed without sulphur so as not to mask its fruit and silky tannins. A straightforward, fresh and smooth wine!
Vinified without addition of sulphites. Concrete tanks, sorting of the harvest, destemming. Extraction by punching down the cap at the beginning of fermentation. Barrel fermentation for about 30 days at 25°C. Elevage without addition of sulphites in 57 HL casks. A fresh, fruity, straightforward wine. Smooth and aromatic on the palate, with notes of fresh fruit coulis and gentle tannins. In the right conditions (between 10 & 15°C and with a level of atmospheric humidity over 70%) Juveniles may be cellared for up to 10 years.
'When we first started working with lees a decade or more ago we had typically 50mm or more of lees and we would get quite a bit of reduction. Today with healthier fruit from organics, we start with less than 30mm of lees, but after 18-24 months we have only 1mm of lees remaining and no reduction at all. Amazingly, the lees have been assimilated back into the wine.' Pascal Verhaeghe, November 2017.
Château du Cèdre is widely regarded as the leading estate in Cahors. Brothers Pascal and Jean-Marc Verhaeghe, both qualified oenologists, can trace its history back to their grandfather Léon who left his native Flanders to settle in south-west France in the early 1900s. In due course Léon’s son Charles and his wife Marie-Thérèse started a mixed farm in 1958 and began planting one hectare of vines in three different plots every year.
Today, Château du Cèdre comprises 27ha of vineyards planted at 4000-5500 vines per hectare on some of the most prized terroirs in Cahors, most notably the famous troisième terrasses. In keeping with the long history of Cahors, 90% of the vineyard is planted to Malbec (known locally as both Cot and Auxerrois), with 5% Merlot (now known to be a half-sibling of Malbec) and 5% Tannat. There is also 1ha of Viognier and a little of the Bordeaux whites, Sémillon, Muscadelle and Sauvignon Blanc.
After a disastrous hail storm in 1995, the brothers decided to re-evaluate their mode of operation in the vineyard, with a goal of bringing to an end the long term use of synthetic chemicals that had plagued the entire world of wine for 50 years (and had directly contributed to the untimely death of the brothers’ father Charles). By 2002 they had eliminated all chemicals from the estate and by 2012 Château du Cèdre was certified organic.