The fifteen-hectare Brethous vineyard in Cadillac is farmed organically and biodynamically. When I visited the vineyard in mid-July, the leaves and hard green berries were dusted with a gray powder that turned out to be bentonite clay. The light-colored coating confuses the bugs, said vigneronne Cécile Mallié Verdier. She also uses essential oil preparations, like lavender, to ward off pests. “We don’t kill them,” she told me. “We just keep them away.”
Bentonite clay dusted onto grapevines confuses insects
The “B de Château” bottling is one hundred percent Merlot, stainless-steel fermented and aged to express the purity of the fruit. It’s fragrant of pine needles, juniper, and plummy red berries, while a whiff of bacon fat adds roundness and savoriness to the aromatic profile. The body is earthy and ripe, with tannins like brushed suede, but the wine finishes in a shiny burst of cherry juice. A lovely balance between dark and light.
About $15 | Imported by Free Run Wines
Sample tasted at the winery on 19 July 2016.