Address: 33850 Léognan
Telephone: +33 (0)5 57 96 56 20
Château Carbonnieux is an historic estate with fine reputation. Records show that wine was first made here in the twelfth century. Later, in the eighteenth century, Benedictine monks from the Sainte-Croix abbey in Bordeaux renovated the estate and replanted the vineyards. Today Château Carbonnieux is run by Eric and Philibert Perrin. Very good wines here. The whites are made in a very lean style which gain weight in bottle and the reds have increasing complexity.
Vineyard/Terroir: 97 hectares, 45 hectares red and 42 hectares white grape varieties, planted on sloping deep gravel. Vineyard comprises 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 1% Malbec for the red and 65% Sauvignon Blanc, 34% Sémillon and 1% Muscadelle for the white.
Winemaking/Elévage: The red has 15-18 months barrel age, one third of which is new oak and the white, which is fermented in barrel, spends ten months in oak, a third of which is also new.
- 2015 Silver/green; lovely fresh Carbonnieux; a beauty; some lanolin and smart confectionary tones; pear drops; depth to the palate and intensity; love the dryness too; nice body and will fill out a touch. Another excellent white. Tasted UGCB 7/6/16. Drink 2019-2025. 91-93
- 2014 Silver/hints of green; very washed and fresh looking; fresh, taut and some green apple notes; sense of finesse and style on the nose; some wax and tautness; peardrop and white flower notes; focused palate; bone dry but with depth and length; refreshing – nicely taut and saline. Salty tang on finish. Genuine length. Classy and elegant. [70% Sauvignon Blanc, 30% Sémillon]. Drink 2017-2025. Tasted UGCB 1 April, 2015. 91-93+
- 2013 Palest green/silver; full nose with wax, white melon and guava tones; attractive; elegance to the palate and acidity present; makes it very crisp and salty. Needs to round out but pretty classic and much more expressive than usual. UGCB April 2014. Drink 2016-2024. 90-92+
- 2012 Silver gold; attractive sheen; tight at first; lime zest; wet wool; flint and oyster shell; mid-eight palate with fresh acidity; lime and citrus notes; moreish and good effort; twist of grapefruit on the finish; overall pretty clean and pure; good length. Bring out a dozen oysters! Drink now – 2020. 92+ UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Silver gold; attractive sheen; tight at first; lime zest; wet wool; flint and oyster shell; mid-weight palate with fresh acidity; lime and citrus notes; moreish and good effort; twist of grapefruit on the finish; overall pretty clean and pure; good length. Bring out a dozen oysters! Drink now – 2020. 91+ Tasted Jan ’15 [Earlier note] Very pale straw/green; round nose, candy notes and some honey; quite elegant palate; fine and lean; pretty classic Carbonnieux. 65% Sauvignon Blanc, 35% Sémillon. 88-90 Tasted Monday April 8, 2013 at Chateau Olivier.
- 2011 Palest straw, washed almost; wax and wet wool nose; taut and tight on the palate with weight and lees notes; apples and wet wool again. Classic Carbonnieux that cries out for a plate of rock oysters. Bone dry. Nice length too. Drink now – 2021. 90 UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Colourless, palest green/mineral grey; elegant; some grass and meadow hints; palate typically neutral at this stage; breadth here though but currently bit lean. Lacks a bit of zip? Will round out I expect. 87-89+
- 2010 Pale green gold; wax, some honey, wet wool; quite tight; palate similarly so; taut style as ever; wax, wet wool, lean but not without depth. Less obviously weighty than Bouscaut but with intensity. Will put on weight in bottle. 88+ [Earlier] Colourless; some grassy, leesy notes; fresh; clean and wet wool palate, wax; good length and depth. Good grip and finish 88-90+/100 [65% Sauvignon Blanc, 35% Semillon] Tasted 6 April 2011 UGC
- 2009 Pale straw/green; some wax and wet wool; bit closed; waxy palate; quite broad but currently a little dumb. Carbonnieux white often a bit backward and sullen but tends to age well. Should be good 88-90?/100 [Earlier] Very pale; apples; fresh; more weight on the palate; some waxy Semillon tones and again good freshness and some acid to balance. This could be good. 88+/100 Tasted 31st March 2010 UGC Primeurs tasting.
- 2008 Gold; fresh nose, some grass and wax; but with real zip and freshness on the palate. This is is really rather racy. Should develop well but very appetizing now. 90+/100 UGC ‘10
- 2015 Deep and attractive colour; tight to rim; ripe, creamy aromas of black cherry with dark chocolate notes; palated textured and pretty dense; plenty of matter here; fresh acids at the end and some tannin; should settle well. Tasted UGCB 7/4/16. Drink 2019-2028. 87-89+
- 2014 Deep and earthy looking; clean; cool blackcurrant fruit; nicely done; pure black fruits; spicy and fresh; cool entry to the palate with nice fresh blackcurrant flavours; nice seam of acidity keeps things interesting; fresh and lively style. [60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc]. Drink 2019-2028. Tasted 1 April, 2015. 88-90
- 2013 Deepish core; some depth aromatically; blackcurrant tones; nice purity; slightly more angular on the palate and marked by oak which pokes through a bit at present; still there is good fruit here and needs to meld a little; less oomph and succulence than Bouscaut [tasted immediately before]. [60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc]. Tasted UGCB April 2014. Drink 2018-2023. 86-88
- 2012 Mid depth; earthy purple; blueberry aromatics with some soft plum; some earth; mid-weight palate with pronounced freshness [acidity]; blackcurrants, blueberries and plum notes; some texture on the mid-palate; nicely managed in the cellar. Elegant and a certain modesty. [60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc 13.5% alc]. Drink 2016-2022. 88 UGC Oct ’14 [Earlier note] Mid depth; earthy purple; blueberry aromatics with some soft plum; some earth; mid-weight palate with pronounced freshness [acidity]; blackcurrants, blueberries and plum notes; some texture on the mid-palate; nicely managed. Elegant and a certain modesty. [60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc 13.5% alc]. Drink 2016-2022. 88+ Tasted Jan ’15 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; ripe and lush nose; pretty fruits; real sense of lushness; palate good entry; ripe; black fruits again, plums, spices; little chewy tannin at the back but good depth. Goodish effort. 5% Cabernet Franc, 35% Merlot, 60% Cabernet Sauvignon 87-89+ UGC Weds April 10, 2013.
- 2011 Mid depth; healthy colour; ripe blackcurrant tones; good purity; clean and pure on the palate with nice elegance; not at all forced; elegant finish. Some acid and sap at the end. Drink 2015-2021. 87 UGC Oct ’13 [Earlier note] Deepish red; purple at edge; some fruit, blackcurrants and polish; very chewy palate; dry tannin and very extracted feel. Feels a bit thin, dry and tannic. 84-86
- 2010 Deep core; earthy red at edge; dark; roasted earthy nose; textured and deep with purity; classy; lots of extract and matter on the palate; real intensity here; some dust and rock; dense with a concentrated ball of inky fruit at its core; needs time – 5 years or so. Some chew to the tannin and tannin also needs to resolve but this is a very promising effort that will last the course. [65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc 14%]. Drink 2018-2030. 92+ Tasted January 2015 [Earlier note] Glossy deep red; earthy blackcurrants, some layers, pure and nicely done; not trying to be more than it is and all the better for it; blackcurrants, earth and ink on the palate; dry tannins but not puckering; right combination here. Earthy, blackcurrants with some style. Chewy finish – the vintage. Good effort. 90 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Deep and black; arterial; plush and velvety on the nose; full and fresh; layers here and very good; quite soft and plush palate, nicely done; lovely and seductive. Nicely judged extraction 90-92+/100 Tasted 6 April 2011 UGC
- 2009 Deep and dark at centre; ripe red fruits, some leaf and blackcurrants; attractive; easy palate; ripe, stone fruits and blackcurrants; lots of material and some chew. Very good effort. Drink now – 2025 90+ MW Institute Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Deeper than the Bouscaut, quite tight to the rim; nice ripe creamy nose; ripe fruit aromas; polished; palate intense, some wood tannin here, will soften up. Very complete and satisfying. Lots of fruit and well done in a structured style. 90/100 Tasted 31st March 2010 UGC Primeurs tasting.
- 2007 Mid red; some depth; some red fruits and tannin on the nose; mid weight palate; OK some acid and depth. Lacks some mid-palate richness here. Fresh and good acids however. 85/100 Oct ’09 UGC London tasting.