Wine Words & Video Tape

Wine, Words and Videotape

Fine Wine Review site

Château de Camensac

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Address: Route de St Julien, 33112 St-Laurent Médoc

Telephone: +33 (0)5 56 59 41 69



Once an under-performing Haut-Médoc cru classé, Château de Camensac was acquired by the Merlaut family in 2005 who also run Château Chasse-Spleen and Château Gruaud Larose. This is now an estate to watch. Their 2009 is very good.

Vineyard/Terrior: Fine deep gravel with hardpan subsoil. 75 hectares comprising 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot. 10,000 vines per hectare and yields 40-45 hectolitres per ha.

Winemaking/Elévage: Aged in French oak barrels for 17-20 months, 40% new each year depending on the vintage.

Tasting notes:

  • 2015 Deep at centre; fresh earthy purple at edge; attractive Bordeaux; nice purity of fruit; elegance but nice seam of fruit; palate more boney and strict; lighter palate than Belgrave; freshness and grip on the finish. Little chew on finish. [57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 43% Merlot, 70% new oak, 13% alc]. Drink 2022-2030. Tasted UGCB 5/4/16. 86-88
  • 2014 Mid depth; dark core; vibrant blackcurrant fruit; aromatic; fresh and layered; perfumed blackcurrant and cassis notes; cool entry and nice concentration; focus and balanced; nicely done; vibrant blackcurrant fruit and summer cherry notes; fresh acid; sappy wine with texture and length. 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, harvested 14-17/10 & 50% Merlot, harvested 22/9-14/10. Drink 2019-2030. Tasted UGC 31 March, 2015. 89-91
  • 2013 Mid depth; light at edge; vibrant; fresh stalky Cabernet tones; blackcurrants; clean and fresh; sweet entry and blackcurrant tones dominate the palate; quite round and elegant on the finish. Some sap here but elegant and unforced style. [55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot]. Drink 2018-2025. Tasted UGCB April 2014. 85-87
  • 2012 Mid depth; more Cabernet freshness on the nose; some earthy notes and blackcurrants; fresh blackcurrants on the palate, little sappy with grip as you’d expect from this estate; earthy blackcurrant favours on the palate. 50% Merlot, 50% Cabernet Sauvignon. UGC Tuesday April 9, 2012 86-88+
  • 2011 Deep at core; earthy purple; legs; ripe and intense; slightly mealy note here, full, layers to the nose suggest reasonable depth. Some minerality; ripe fruit on the palate; blackcurrant and cassis; quite high toned; middle palate a little dry but should fill out. Tannins supple however. Structured but there is flesh here. Nice-ish length and grip at the end. Tasted UGC. 86-88 April ’12
  • 2010 Deep and glossy looking; again attractive purity; blackcurrant tones and spices; composed; perhaps a little ‘chalky’; elegant spicy blackcurrant notes on the palate; vibrant and freshly styled with acids more apparent; lots of material; fresher style with grippy finish. Drink 2015-2030. 90+ MW Institute Nov ’14 [Earlier note] Deep and saturated; earthy and intense, quite attractive meaty, earthy blackcurrant aromas with undergrowth; grippy blackcurrant flavours on the palate, some earth but lots of material and extract; plenty of chew but acid. Works well in its earthy way. 89+/100 UGC Oct ’12 [Earlier] Deep and saturated; fresh, some perfume, some boiled sweet, some higher toned qualities; dense and extracted with grippy tannins. Probably will settle as there is length and density here. Grippy. 86-88+/100 Tasted 5 April 2011 at UGC. [Second tasting] Very deep black, very ripe, cherry with blacker fruits; dense and tannic palate, over extraction here, very chewy and tannic. If comes good 85-87?/100 Tasted 7 April 2011 at UGC
  • 2009 Tight and dense looking; stones and minerals; ripe Cabernet tones [Franc & Sauvignon] and plenty of blackcurrant fruit; full and quite sappy palate; blackcurrants and spices; intense and pent up with good freshness [acid]. Will work nicely in a slightly fresher style than most in this vintage. Drink 2016-2029 91+ MW Institute, Nov ’13 [Earlier note] Deep and dark at core; deep blackcurrant nose; obvious depth but not as come-hither as some; open palate; quite worked with slight vegetal streak – maybe let’s call it ‘earthy’ – very grippy and tannic on the end with real bite. Not as immediately appealing as Cantemerle or Belgrave, its immediate classed growth competitors. See how this develops. 87-89?/100 UGC Oct ’11 [Earlier] Deep, inky; some beetrooty notes, spicy; solid; palate solid yet also supple; lacks sophistication and polish; Goodish. 88/100 Tasted 30th March 2010
  • 2008 Mid depth; more intensity to the nose [focus] mealy note alongside earth, blackcurrant and spice; leaf; more structured palate with greater acid bite; finishes drier than Belgrave and more austere in feel at the end. 87 MW Institute Nov ’12 [Earlier] Mid depth; blackcurrants on the nose; quite pure and fresh; ripeness here and real Cabernet precision and freshness; some chocolate too; palate concentrated with guts and extract. Lots of flavour and pure fresh style. Not bad and further evidence of the renaissance at this estate. 87+/100 UGC Oct ’10
  • 2007 Mid depth; some leaf and blackcurrant; high toned as this often is; feels elegant; some red fruits; some spice and herbal tones; vigour and freshness to the palate; Cabernet freshness; though ultimately a bit angular and grippy. Fresh, stalky,blackcurrant style. 86+/100 MW Institute Nov ’11
  • 2006 Deep central core, up to the edge; nutty note to the nose, some intensity, quite dominant Cabernet note but pure with intensity; grippy and tannic but good flesh on the bones. Tannin and acid still pretty strong but should develop well in the medium term. 87/100 MW Institute Nov ’10
  • 1999 Mid red; some light tobacco and spice; palate feels a little lightish; fully mature. 84/100 Sept ‘09

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