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1997 Branaire-Ducru Bordeaux Blend
Bordeaux Blend: 750ml
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The long history of Chateau Branaire-Ducru coincides with that of the (usually gentlemanly) stuggle for power between the bourgeoisie and nobles for possession of land in the Médoc before the French Revolution.
Since 1988, Patrick Maroteaux and Philippe Dhalluin, respectively President and Managing Director of Branaire-Ducru, have been reviving the competition, and the wine media are sitting up and taking notice.
Branaire's many old vines and perfectly kept vineyards, some of which are newly planted, are decided strong points.
Philippe Dhalluin explains: "The very gravelly soil, as well as the high average age of the vines, account for Branaire-Ducru's low yields.
Care is taken to control the vigour of the young vines. Rather than resorting to thinning out, which we find somewhat brutal, we prefer to let grass grow between the rows in plots of young vines. This is an entirely natural way of limiting production. It also has the advantage of fighting drought conditions since vine roots must go deep down into the soil to find water, and are thus able to cope with long dry spells".
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