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Chateau Branaire-Ducru

Saint Julien

Location: Chateau Branaire-Ducru is located in the commune of Saint Julien. Branaire-Ducru is surrounded by well known neighbors. Across the street is Chateau Beychevelle and nearby you will find Chateau Ducru-Beaucaillou and Chateau Gruaud-Larose.

Size: 120 acres (about 50 hectares) producing about 22,000 total cases (15,000 cases of Chateau Branaire-Ducru).

Classification: Chateau Branaire-Ducru was rated as a Fourth Growth in the Classification of 1855

Vineyard: 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot . The vineyards of Branaire-Ducru have a relatively low yeild of grapes. This is thought to be due to the high average age of their vines as well as the stress placed on the vines by the very gravelly soil. The vines average 35 years of age. In an effort to limit the yeild from the vines without 'green harvesting', grass is allowed to grow between the rows. This has the effect of limiting the surface water and forcing the vines to develop deep root systems.

Vinification: Chateau Branaire-Ducru has developed a regimen of strictly applying classical methods but giving them a modern twist. The winemaking facility was modernized in the last years of the 20th century and the design places a particular emphasis on the use of gravity to move the wine rather than mechanical pumps. This was the first real application of gravity in a winery in modern Bordeaux.
Fermentation takes place in temperature controlled, stainless steel tanks and lasts 3 weeks. There are a variety of vat sizes on the property to make it easier to do separate processing of the grapes from individual vineyard parcels and grape varieties.

The young wines are aged in oak barrels for about 20 months. New barrels make up 50% of the mix each vintage. During the aging period, the wines are racked via gravity into clean barrels, leaving behind sediments that develop in the wine. At the end of the barrel aging, the wines are racked again and they are fined in the traditional manner using egg whites. Finally, all the wines are bottled on the property.

History: Chateau Branaire-Ducru was originally a part of Chateau Beychevelle. In 1680 the property was acquired by Jean-Baptiste Braneyre and became known as Chateau Branaire. It was owned by various members of the 'de Luc' family for well over a century. During the French Revolution, some members of the 'de Luc' family were arrested and faced difficult times. It was during this period that the family name changed to Duluc. In 1824, the main building of the property (we incorrectly call it a chateau) was constructed by Louis and Justin Duluc who owned the property at that time. The property was further passed through members of the Duluc family until 1875 when Gustave Ducru became the sole owner after purchasing the shares owned by other family members. The Chateau was rated as a Fourth Growth in the Medoc Classification of 1855. In 1919 the property was sold to Jean-Michel Tapie. The modern era for Chateau Branaire-Ducru began in1988 when the estate was purchased by the Maroteaux family. Patrick Maroteaux is the President of the company and Philippe Dhalluin is the Managing Director.

Style: Chateau Branaire-Ducru is a spendid mix of power, elegance and sublety. The wines tend to be 'fruit-forward' in style but have the structure and power to require at least a decade of aging before the wine really shows it's true nature.

Food: Serve with grilled meats and game.

Second Wine:  Chateau Duluc represents about 1/3 of Branaire-Ducru's production. About 7,000 cases of Chateau Duluc is produced each year. In good vintages, Chateau Duluc requires about 5 years of aging.

Chateau Branaire-Ducru Auction Price History - Click Here

33250 SAINT Julien-France
Tel.: +33 (0)556 592 586