Château de Haut Coulon strives to foster innovation in the vines and, equally, in the winery. To bring the best out of a terroir teeming with life, it is essential to know how to adapt, without fear of change. At Château de Haut Coulon, no part of the winemaking process, from fermentation to blending, is set in stone. The approach is self-consciously empirical, inspired by a continuous striving for perfection.
Mechanically picked with high-performance on-board sorting, the harvest at Haut Coulon is remarkable for its quality. A second sorting is carried out in the winery, selecting only the finest grapes.
To bring out the purest expression of the terroir, another selection process is just as crucial: the choice of yeasts. Over time, a number of methods have been tested, including the selection of indigenous strains identified and collected in the vineyard. In more recent vintages, the team has turned to non-fermentative yeasts, a form of bioprotection that enables them to forego SO2 input during the winemaking process.
At Château de Haut-Coulon, to bring out the best from its magnificent terroir, the team allows itself a certain amount of room for manoeuvre. No methodology is taken for granted. After several vintages using Integral Vinification (alcoholic fermentation in barrels), the Haut Coulon team has recently turned to tronconic concrete vats. The form of these vats enable optimal extraction of aromas, with their porous surfaces enabling the subtle microoxygenation that softens the wine’s tannic structure.
These cellular concrete vats were also chosen for their remarkable thermal inertia. At each and every stage of the winemaking process, the team seeks to recreate the freshness and minerality of the terroir. As such, two thirds of the harvest remains in vats, while the remaining third is new oak barrels for a period of 12 to 18 months.
Château de Haut Coulon is a Cadillac Côtes de Bordeaux original. Freshness above all else, followed by intensity and complexity, and a certain ageing potential. This wine owes its quality to an exceptional terroir, sustainable winegrowing and sophisticated winemaking, but every vintage comes down to the blend…
The property’s iconic Merlot makes up the majority of this particular blend, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon and a touch of Médoc-inspired Petit Verdot. A blend that remains faithful to the property’s empiricism, with proportions that vary according to the vintage, but within which each element knows its role. In Château de Haut Coulon’s Cadillac Côtes de Bordeaux, Merlot provides ripeness, Cabernet Sauvignon provides structure and Petit Verdot adds a unique set of spicy, floral notes.