The Médoc region stretches from the city of Bordeaux, following the gravel and clay soils of the west bank of the Gironde River all the way to the coast, some 100 miles further north. It encompasses the superior sub-region of Haut- Médoc to the south
The modern era for Chateau de Camensac began in 1964, when the estate was purchased by the Forner brothers, who also established Marqués de Cacères in Rioja. The brothers proceeded to turn things around at Camensac, with a program of extensive replanting of 85 hectares of vineyard, renovation of the winery and procurement of the services of consultant oenologist Professor Emile Peynaud.
Just before the 2005 harvest, the Forner family sold de Camensac to Jean Merlaut of Gruaud Larose and his niece Celine Villars of Chasse-Spleen, heralding a new era of excellence. They immediately introduced a second wine and a tough selection process in the pursuit of the highest quality.
The Camensac vineyards are on a gravelly elevation in the commune of Saint-Laurent-Médoc, and the excellent drainage afforded by the deep, stony soil is augmented by a system of field drains. The various plots, all within the Haut-Médoc appellation, are mostly Cabernet Sauvignon (60% of the vineyard area), the remainder being Merlot. The vineyard treatments are applied in a rational fashion, with some use of natural fertiliser, and control of yields using both pruning and a green harvest as required. The vineyard is about 35 years old although significant replanting will result in the introduction of superior clones.
A dense yet bright purple colour that remains impressive to the rim is supported by seductive aromas of ripe sweet pepper, blackcurrant, plum and cedar wood spice. The wonderfully ripe 2005 vintage marks a watershed in quality for de Camensac, the first harvest made under the guidance of Gruaud Larose. The rich, fleshy palate offers opulent fruit, hugely concentrated scents and flavours of sweet blueberry and cassis whilst silky textured ripe tannins hold a firm structure.
A dense velvety Medoc, fragrant with ripe fruit and cedar wood on the nose, notes of cherries and blackberries linger on the tongue.
Serve with roasted joints of meat, braised lamb shank, steak, spicy casseroles and well flavoured cheeses.