Chateau de France profile

 

A neighboring Estate to Château Fieuzal and Chateau Malartic Lagravière on the terrace of Léognan, Château de France has changed ownership several times during its lifetime, Philippe Decoud original owner who constructed the Chateau in the 17th century, Taffard an advisor to the Guyenne Parliament, developed the vineyards of Chateau de France in the 18th century, then Jean-Henri Lacoste, a businessman involved in furniture industry who also owned and managed the property for 32 years.
The adventure actually began years prior, in 1971, when Bernard Thomassin was offered the opportunity to buy the property without having seen it. All he knew was that the property was in a state of neglect and that he would practically have to start building it from scratch
Although Bernard Thomassin was not born in Bordeaux, he has become as « Bordelais » as its native people. The Thomassin family, in fact, has a renowned professional history in the area surrounding Paris for distillation.
In 1985 the distillation plant closed down due largely to the changes in the regulations of alcohol production and consumption in France. The result was the move of the family to Bordeaux
Bernard Thomassin purchased this 100 acre estate that a proper course was charted for success. What started as an adventure of sorts turned out to be a real passion for Bernard Thomassin made it a unique objective to restore Chateau de France and to give its wines the quality for which they are currently recognized.

In 1986, Bernard closed his Northern France business to devote all of his time and energy to his Bordeaux enterprise. The timing was fortuitous as the following year; the INAO (Institut Nationale d’Appellation d’Origne) designated Léognan and nine other communes as the new Pessac-Léognan appellation and included Château de France among its 60 elevated northern Graves estates.
In 1996, Bernard’s son Arnaud joined the family business after completing his degree in viticulture and enology. In the past decade, Arnaud has assumed direction of the estate and retained the services of consultant Michel Rolland and Gilles Rey. The wines are now receiving comparable reviews to those of the appellation leaders costing three times the price or more.

Chateau de France Rouge Label

 

2010 Château de France Rouge

Varietal: Red Blend
Appellation : Pessac-Léognan, Graves, Bordeaux
Alcohol: 14.50%
Blend: 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot
Annual Production: 7,000 Cases
Maitre de Chai: Gilles Rey
Winemaker: Michel Rolland

 

 

 

 

 

 

International Wine Critics:

Steven Spurrier (16points): Chateau de France Rouge 2010 “The best I’ve ever tasted from here” Decanter Vintage Report June 2011
Jancis Robinson (17points): Chateau de France Rouge 2010 “Very seductive and silky with beautiful ripe, seamless fruit and well-judged tannins underneath, sufficient though by no means excessive acidity, Very smart” Jancis Robinson JR November 2013
James Suckling (93 points): Chateau de France Rouge 2010 “Yum. Aromas of plums, chocolate and hazelnut follow through to a full body, with soft and velvety tannins and a chewy finish, needs at least five years to soften, best ever from here” James Suckling February 2013
James Molesworth (91points): Chateau de France Rouge 2010 “Sappy intense Kirsch and boysenberry fruit is mixed with a strong tarry spine that lends a grippy feel to this version. Licorice snap, black tea and plum compote notes all fill in on the gusty finish” Wine Spectator February 2013
Roger Voss (91-93 points): Chateau de France Rouge 2010 “The wine feels powerful and dense, with tannins dominating. A hard, foursquare wine packed with weighty fruit and power” Wine Enthusiast April 2011
Robert Parker: Chateau de France Rouge 2010 “Prodigious Vintage.” The renowned Robert Parker praised the 2010 vintage’s freshness and ability to age, calling it “a prodigious vintage alongside 2009.” This year kept the high tannins and excellent fruit we loved about the bar-setting 2009, and added the magic quality of acidity. ERobertParker.com

Chateau de France white Label

 

 

2013 Château de France Blanc

Varietal: Bordeaux White Blend
Appellation : Pessac-Léognan, Graves, Bordeaux
Alcohol: 13.00%
Blend: 80% Sauvignon Blanc, 20% Semillion
Annual Production: 1,250 Cases
Maitre de Chai: Gilles Rey
Winemaker: Michel Rolland

 

 

 

 

 

 

International Wine Critics:

Stephen Brook  (17.5 points): Chateau de France Blanc 2013 “For some years Arnaud Thomassin has been making excellent wines, Red and White, at this well located Leognan property, the white sees a fair of oak, but it’s judiciously handled and never dominates the fruit, it’s also a wine that offers excellent value” Decanter July 2014
Jancis Robinson (17points): Chateau de France Blanc 2013 “Pale green straw, some oak influenceand a lot of flattering attraction. Very firm and with great structure and succulence. Smoky and great subtlety and oak handling. This the sort of wine many New World producers try to emulate…Quite long. Very strong citrus character” Jancis Robinson April 2011                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       James Suckling (92 points): Chateau de France Blanc 2013 “Mandarin, sliced apple and ripe lemon. SomeJapenese pear and charming notes snowdrops. Wonderful attack on the palate with a full body, ripe juicy acidity and lots of wood in this sumptuous white that still needs to integrate” James Suckling February 2013
Robert Parker (89points): Chateau de France Blanc 2013 “Attractive aromas of orange blossom and grapefruit are followed by a meduim bodied, pleasant, dry white that can be enjoyed over the next 5 – 10 years.”ERobertParker.Com August 2014
James Molesworth (89 points): Chateau de France Blanc 2013 “Plump, with lime pulp, Kiwi Fruit and tarragon notes at the core, followed by a rouded, fairly open finish” Wine Spectator April 2014
Roger Voss (91-93 points): Chateau de France Blanc 2013 “Crisp and bright, this is s tightly textured wine that is full of delicious citrus fruits, layered with intense minirality. It will need to age.” Wine Enthusiast April 2014

Chateau Coquillas Front Label

 

2013 Château Coquillas Rouge 2013

Varietal: Bordeaux Red Blend
Appellation : Pessac-Léognan, Graves, Bordeaux
Alcohol: 13.00%
Blend: 43% Cabernet Sauvignon, 57% Merlot
Annual Production: 3,000 Cases
Maitre de Chai: Gilles Rey
Winemaker: Michel Rolland

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is the second label for château de France. Mostly consumed entirely in Bordeaux and Northern France especially in Paris area.
Arnaud meets the appellation’s strict yield limits (45hl/ha for Red and 48hl/ha for White) by green harvesting in early summer. CHÂTEAU COQUILLAS is named for the fossilized sea shells in the soil of several of the estate’s parcels going back to the Burdigalian Era. It is an earlier-maturing red that includes fruit from the estate’s younger Cabernet and Merlot vines. It represents one of the best values in the appellation.
These vines are growing on a soil dating back to the Burdigalian era, about 19 million years. At that time the ocean covered this area, as we can see there’s all sort of shells, shark teeth…etc. what is interesting is that all of the shells found in this property are of tropical origin. The climate was very hot then. The conservation of these shells is exceptional. What is particular to this area is the state of conservation of these shells; you would think that by now the soil will be a blend of fossils, rocks and galettes. Here, it’s not the case we can see that the shells are still in a great state of conservation”

Sebastien Buisson French Paleontologist.