The BROWN vineyard is constantly evolving: each plot is drained and examined with care before being replanted. This focus on excellence also applies to all the work on the vines, which is adapted with care to each vintage: ploughing is given preference over use of weed-killers to enhance aeration of the soils and encourage deep vine root development, thus avoiding water stress in very hot years. Yields are controlled and limited to 42 hectolitres per hectare for reds and 38 for whites (ten-year average).
The grapes are harvested by hand, of course, using small trays, sometimes in several successive operations as the grapes reach perfect ripeness. Red and white grapes alike are sorted on the vines by the fifty-or-so harvesters employed each year. The work on the vines is enhanced each year by new know-how contributed by each of the members of the team, in particular Bruno Patrouilleau – Vineyard Manager and Cellar Master – with his twenty years of experience, who assists JC Mau in his uncompromising quest to shape ambitious wines.
Château Brown has been actively engaged since 2012 in a sustainable agriculture process, gradually introducing an Environmental Management System into its daily work, and in July 2014 was awarded ISO 14 001 registration. Château Brown is aiming to go even further towards creating and developing a real natural ecosystem, so has continued to set up various campaigns promoting the estate’s biodiversity. As another logical step, Château Brown then committed to the process of gaining HVE certification, which it was granted in January 2018.
2014 Chateau Brown
Blend: 55% Cabernet-Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot
Average age of the vineyard: 24 years
Harvesting: 100% manual, in small boxes, with bunch selection on the vine. Double sorting in the winery (bunches and grapes), using vibrating sorting tables (for Merlot) and optical sorting (for Cabernet Sauvignon)
Maturation: 100 % in French oak barrels, 12 to 16 months, 30% of new barrels
“Wine Advocate”: (3/18) – 91 Points, Neal Martin (drink 2020 – 2038)
“The 2014 Brown, now in bottle, is building on the promise it showed in barrel. It has a ripe and generous bouquet with upfront cedar-infused black fruit. This property is always a little feisty in its youth and this 2014 is no different, though it needs 3-4 years to fully assimilate the new oak. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp tannin, delicious black fruit laced with tobacco and spices, gently fanning out towards the finish that offers commendable substance and length. A Pessac-Léognan property that I feel is undervalued in the marketplace, this 2014 Château Brown comes recommended and should drink well for 15-20 years.”