This morning the release of Vieux Chateau Certan (VCC) marks the end of the 2016 en primeur campaign. We have decided to release this with L’Eglise Clinet, which we kept in the locker, to curate a blockbuster Pomerol report. Both VCC and L’Eglise Clinet are adored by collectors and in 2016 they both have made special wines.

In 2016 Vieux Chateau Certan has been awarded 95-97 points from Neal Martin and 98-99 from Suckling. Martin calls it an ‘outstanding wine’, although laments the lower blend of Cabernet Franc. James Suckling also views it as a great wine ‘It’s a wine that seduces you with every sip — already. Great selection here. Quite simply turbocharged at the end.’ Today’s release price is £1,200 per case of six bottles, a 28% euro increase on last year.

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Vieux Chateau Certan is the world beating Pomerol wine, which many believe is comparable in quality to Chateau Petrus, which it neighbours. The Estate heralds back to the 18th century and has been considered a leader in the village since. It was bought by Belgian wine merchant, George Thienpont in 1924, remaining in the family ever since. The family are also well known from Chateau Le Pin, which they purchased in 1979. Vieux Chateau Certan has been managed by Alexandre Theinpont since 1985 and over the last decade it has established itself as one of the consistently highest scoring wines in Bordeaux and with less than 5,000 cases produced each year of the Grand Vin, one of the hardest to secure on release. Today the Estate consists of 14 hectares, planted with 60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. The wines undergoes 18-22 months in new French oak. The second wine is called Gravette de Certan.

Vieux Chateau Certan 2016, 12×75 – £2,400 EP or 6×75 – £1,200 EP

95-97 Points, Neal Martin, The Wine Advocate
The 2016 Vieux Chateau Certan is a blend of 85% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc and 1% Cabernet Sauvignon that was picked at 40.50 hectoliters per hectare, in three stages of picking: 3-7, 10-11 and 17-18 October. It has a high IPT of 82 and a pH of 3.77. It has a very refined bouquet with blackberry, briary and morello cherries that are tightly wound at first, but open gradually with aeration. The Merlot is fully in control aromatically; this is not a VCC governed by the Cabernet Franc this year, consistent with the 2016 vintage. The palate is medium-bodied with fine-grain tannin. There is plenty of dark berry fruit laced with hints of earl grey and bay leaf, a complex and cerebral Pomerol with a long, precise and (to put it banally) delicious finish. This is another outstanding wine from Alexandre and Guillaume Thienpont.

98-99 Points, James Suckling
The balance and finesse to this wine are really beautiful with ultra-fine tannins and beautiful fruit. It’s full and structured yet so long and intense. It’s a wine that seduces you with every sip — already. Great selection here. Quite simply turbocharged at the end.

To buy this wine, click here