Sited just outside the town of St. Emilion, Chateau Canon la Gaffelire has been on the rise in the last decades and has seen a tremendous increase of demand after being upgraded to Premier Grand Cru Classe B in the official 2012 St. Emilion Classification.
Canon La Gaffelière began as two separate estates, Canon Boitard and La Gaffeliere Boitard, in the 19th Century. They were eventually combined and bought by the Von Neipperg family in 1971.
Stephan von Neipperg, the Count of the Holy Roman Empire, is the current proprietor. Stephan is ascribed with much of the Estate’s current success. He has been an exponent of modern winemaking techniques, including micro-oxygenation, but the innovations are tempered with tradition. The Chateau has also benefited from close involvement from oenologist Stephane Derenoncourt.
The 19.5-hectare vineyard predominates in clay, limestone, and sandy soils, although the best parcels grow in deep clay, where the vines date back to the 1930s. These characteristics are perfectly suited to the grape varieties planted here: 55% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. One of the first major changes Stephan von Neipperg made was the move to sustainable farming. In 2014, Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere was certified as being 100% organic.
The grapes are hand-harvested and destemmed, then fermented without crushing in temperature-controlled wooden vats. The wine is aged in mostly new oak barrels for up to 20 months. The result is a silky-textured and elegant wine, with aromas of flowers, earth, fruit, truffle and stone.