Planted to 88% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Cabernet Franc, this Grand Cru Saint Emilion estate is located in the commune of Saint Christophe des Bardes, which is considered a top area in the AOC of St. Emilion. The chalky clay with limestone soils suit these grape varieties, and the average age of the vines is 30 years. Purchased in 1996 by the Milhade company, Boutisse is superbly situated next to Fleur Cardinale, making it a particularly appealing acquisition for the firm. Every technique in winemaking strives for the highest quality. After hand sorting, the grapes are gravity fed to the small, temperature controlled stainless steel vats. Natural yeasts trigger a long fermentation, and followed by 3 week maceration for extraction of color, fruit and tannin. Malolactic takes place in new oak barrels in the adjacent cellars. Fining is done with egg whites and racking is done every 3 months. Following 18 months in new oak, the wine is lightly filtered before being bottled. Look for black cherry and plum fruit, mocha, sweet spices and vanilla in the nose and mouth. We visited this estate during our 2009 barrel tastings in Bordeaux and we found this to be an extra special value.
A backward, but potentially outstanding 2009, this obscure vineyard near the super-impressive overachiever, Fleur-Cardinale, possesses a dense purple color in addition to a big, pure nose of smoke, camphor, blackberries, and cassis. Deep, tannic, rich, and full-bodied, it will benefit from 1-2 years of cellaring, and should drink well for 10-15. (Tasted two times.)
A bright, stylish version, with lilting incense and cherry preserves aromas followed by sleek raspberry and blackberry fruit and gentle spice notes on the silky finish. Drink now through 2018. 7,330 cases made.