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N°165

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Château Certan de May : A strong personality

03/11
Winegrower

Winegrower Bordelais - Pomerol

Château
Certan de May

A strong personality

At the crossing of the ways to Lussac and St Jacques de Compostelle, the five hectares all in one piece of the Château Certan de May root in the famous gravelly clay plateau of Pomerol which produces
the best wines.
Historically speaking, the name of the property “De May” is a noble Scottish family's who came to settle in France in the Middle Ages. Its descendants moved in the XVIth century in Guyenne, to the locality of Certan, near the Church of Pomerol. Century after century, the property kept its five hectares.
From then on let's focus on the modern era, to understand the very family spirit which reigns here. The running of the estate, of the vineyards, of the wines owe much to the tenacity and the passion of a great lady, Mrs Odette Barreau-Badar. Young widow in the 60's, she had to take over the reins of the chateau and its production while raising her five children. Leading and courageous woman, involved in the life of the town and its associations, still at the head of the family business, she arouses the respect of people around her and especially of her children. Three of them—Isabelle, Patrick and Jean-Luc Barreau—are permanently at the Château Certan and also follow up the two other properties:
Château La Fleur Poitou in appellation Lussac Saint-Emilion, and Château Grand Sorillon in Bordeaux Supérieur. Isabelle is in charge of the management, Patrick, of the vineyards, Jean-Luc, of the winery and the vinification. The latter, constantly looking for the wines' quality and expression of the different terroirs, trains himself, keeps informed, follows the technique evolutions, both in the vineyards and in the cellars. “We export almost 80% of our production and each year we present our wines at the Primeurs. From 1979, Robert Parker tasted them and told us that they suited American and Anglo-saxon palates. A meeting which enabled to develop more parti­cularly, with our merchants, sales in these countries.” Jean-Luc Barreau comments. The average production is of 24,000 bottles of Pomerol, in a human-sized winery where are vinified 70% of Merlot, 25% of Cabernet Franc and 5% of Cabernet Sauvignon. 60% of the batches then age in new barrels. “The worst vinification I remember remains the 1991 vintage; the best: the 1982! At the moment, the 2010 vintage seems to shape very well: deep colour, intensity, structure, good length… and what a fruitiness! But let's stay moderate and wait for the Primeur tastings.” Jean-Luc Barreau concludes.
Florence VaraineChâteau Certan de May
33500 Pomerol
Tél.: 05 57 51 41 53
Fax : 05 57 51 88 51