Penetrating notes of violet and rose complement intense, almost syrupy aromas of strawberry and red cherry. Then dense and suave in the mouth, with rich flavors of red berries and minerals complicated by vanilla and violet.
Château Pavie-Macquin gets its name from Albert Macquin, its 19th-century owner who was also a specialist in the then new practice of grafting European vines onto American rootstocks, thereby saving plants from ruin by phylloxera. His descendants, the Corre-Macquin family, still own the 37-acre estate, which is in the St.-Emilion appellation of Bordeaux. The estate’s vineyards are on the top of a plateau and are adjacent to the famous vineyards of Troplong Mondot and Pavie. Winemaker Nicolas Thienpont runs the estate, which is biodynamically farmed. Vineyards are planted to 70% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. Some 55,000 bottles are produced annually. The second wine is Château Les Chenes de Macquin. Robert M. Parker Jr. has written that “this estate…has become one of the stars of St.-Emilion.” In the 2006 reclassification of Saint- Emilion Pavie Macquin was promoted to Premier Grand Cru.
Saint-Émilion is on the east side of the Dordogne River. At 13,400 acres it is one of Bordeaux’s largest appellations, and perhaps its most picturesque. It is also home to what has been called “the garagiste” movement of upstart, tradition-defying winemakers who produce artisanal wines in styles that are unconventional for the appellation. The village of Saint-Émilion dates from the middle ages and it sits on low hills, surrounded by ancient walls. Like its neighbor Pomerol, Saint-Émilion was not included in the famous Bordeaux classification system of 1855. But a century later a ranking system was put in place, and unlike the classification system for the Medoc, the Saint-Émilion system is reviewed every ten years, meaning that estates can be upgraded or downgraded. There are three rankings: Grand Cru Classé, Premier Grand Cru Classé B and Premier Grand Cru Classé A, with the final ranking being the best. Such legendary Saint-Émilion estates as Châteaux Ausone and Cheval-Blanc are Premier Grand Cru Classé A, along with Châteaux Pavie and Angélus, both added to the classification in 2012. Wines in this appellation are primarily Merlot, mixed with Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.