“For connoisseurs and amateurs alike, Bordeaux often calls to mind the world of Grand Cru Classé wines, the true elite of Bordeaux, indeed the world, unrivalled icons in fine wine circles. Yet Bordeaux is also associated with appellations of less prestigious standing, where great wines can still be produced on excellent soils. And this is precisely why we acquired Château Pey La Tour in 1990, fully committed to revealing the full potential of this stunning terroir and craft a magnificent, characterful, complex and elegant wine.” Patrick Jestin.~~ Find out more ~~
Surface area: 176 Ha
~~ See map ~~
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Examples of English horse armour dating back to the 14th century discovered near the ruins of the tower that is still visible today in the heart of the vines, bear witness to the history of this noble estate. From the Middle Ages to the French Revolution, a number of powerful families succeeded one another to the head of this Seignory, including the Montpezat and the De la Mota de Roquetaillade families in the 15th and 16th centuries, the Duperier de Larsan in the 18th century, and Gouteyron-Libéral and Pierre de Vassal Sineuil, mayor of Salleboeuf, in the 19th century. Every one of these families left its mark on the history of the estate and the Bordeaux region. Vines have always formed an important part of the property. Viticulture developed in the 18th century and the Château was constantly featured as one of the region most prominent wine estates in the famous Féret wine guide, since its third edition in 1874, it was known at the time as Château de La Tour and remained such until 2002.
The wines produced at Château Pey La Tour owe their character to the type of soils specific to the region, whose geological profile stems from movements of the Dordogne river hundreds of thousands of years ago. Gravel deposits that match the former riverbed lie on a secondary base of calcareous clay, visible traces of which have risen to the surface across most of the vineyard. Château Pey La Tour thus benefits from a remarkable diversity of terroirs comprising clay-limestone soils, where the percentage of clay is often higher than 50%, which are ideal for producing concentrated, fresh Merlot ; gravel soils with compact gravel made up of small pebbles held tightly in a matrix of clay, perfect for ripening Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon, and finally, alluvial clay limiting water stress in the vine during heatwave conditions, and producing red wines with fresh fruit aromas. Each replanted vineyard block was subject to pedo-geological studies in order to select the most suitable vines for the terroir. A combination of soil-type, grape variety, rootstock and vine-age has led to 90 different parcels vinified and aged separately, awarding Château Pey La Tour with the character and complexity of a very great Bordeaux wine.
The viticultural regime has been reviewed entirely and applied across the whole vineyard, respecting the terroir and vines to obtain grapes of optimum quality. Nothing is left to chance and an exceptionally meticulous care and attention is paid to the vineyard for this region of production, including increasing planting densities and leaf surface area (over 90% of the vineyard is planted at a density of 5,500 vines per hectare, which is high for the region*), installing drainage in the replanted plots, natural cover planting every other row, reduced cropping levels, manual leaf and crop-thinning, sustainable viticulture practiced throughout the vineyard and the installation of an integrated weather station. These operations in the vineyard, carried out with rigour, passion and attention to detail for over twenty years by the Dourthe team, allow harvesting to be significantly spread over time, so that the grapes are only harvested at optimum maturity.
*(minimal density for the Bordeaux Appellation : 4000 vines/Ha, minimal density for the Bordeaux Supérieur Appellation : 4500 vines/Ha)
In addition to the rigorous work carried out in the vineyard, Château Pey La Tour boasts an exemplary winery with a reception area for the grapes ideally suited to staggered harvests and rigorous berry selection. The stainless steel tank room is equipped with temperature control on all the tanks, which are in sufficient number and adequate size to vinify the grapes by individual vineyard block, and in separate batches. The Réserve du Château, which expresses the specific character of the finest terroirs, is aged for 12 - 14 months in the barrel hall next to the winery. The results of these efforts have been rewarded today not only in the loyalty of our customers, but also in the excellent press reviews, instating Château Pey La Tour well above its appellation, and as a true benchmark for a reasonably-priced, great wine.