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Situated in the very heart of the fabled, right bank, appellation of Saint Emilion, this is a small, 5 hectare property in Saint-Sulpice-de-Faleyrens, planted to 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon. The Chateau’s name is derived from the battle of the Pont d’Arcole, where Napolean faced Austrian soldiers in what is now northern Italy. This was in 1796. Jean Barthe was a soldier in Napoleon’s Guard, and celebrated in their victory. He was paid a few pieces of gold for his service. Mosieur Barthe used this gold to buy what would become vineyards in Bordeaux. Two centuries later, his great ancestor, Veronique, runs the estate.


The vineyard consists of a single piece of land surrounding the chateau. In its some 300 years of operation it has always been farmed organically. Today, it holds the Agriculture Biologique status. As such, no weed killers, pesticides, nor fertilizers are employed in the vineyard. Vineyard management, including debudding, deleafing, and green harvest are all done by hand.


Winemaking today is carried out in a renovated 19th century farm building on the property. Fermentation occurs in small stainless steel vats. Colour and tannic extraction is carried out gently, and very slowly. To preserve freshness and vitality, no pumping is employed during maceration. Barrel aging is typically between 14 and months, depending on the quality of the vintage. Bottling is done without filtration.


Veronique Barthe and Philippe Gardere continue to own and operate the Chateau today, as well as the famed Chateau La Freynelle in the Entre-Deux-Mers region, also in Bordeaux. They continue their commitment to eco-friendliness. The bee on the label references these initiatives. They employ eco-bottles that are 10% lighter, their foils are coloured with natural dyes, and entirely recyclable, the labels are made of recycled paper and natural ink, their wine cases are from recycled materials, and their brochures are similarly printed on recycled paper, using natural ink.


Chateau D’Arcole Rouge Saint Emilion


Vintage to vintage this wine is typically around 70/30 Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon. Employing minimal intervention, this wine tends to be more feminine, with soft edges, higher acid, lower alcohol present, albeit still very Bordeaux in character, with plums, black currants, black cherries, sweet vanillas, and minty hints. Rosemary and garlic roasted chicken would be lovely with this, as well as leg of lamb, or even a tomato meat ragout.


Les Dunes Du Cap-Ferret


Referencing a regional beach resort, and the subsequent joie-de-vivre, this wine comes from an estate that has been in the Barthe family since 1789. It is 60/40 Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon, from 25+ year old vines, in clay and limestone soils. As the name implies, this is a fun-in-the-sun wine, citrusy, with lemon/lime, grapefruit notes, fresh green herbs, green apples, and a touch of cotton candy in the mid palate. Flat fish, shrimp, oysters are all friends here. Alternatively, a crispy salad, salty ham, antipasti, or just a nice, sultry book in the cabana are what is entirely called for here.                    

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