Learn everything about Chateau Du Tertre, Margaux Fifth Growth, Bordeaux producer profile, with wine tasting notes and wine with food pairing tips. Learn all the best vintages, a history of the property, information on the vineyards and winemaking. If you want to read about other important, Bordeaux Chateaux: Links to all Bordeaux Wine Producer Profiles
Chateau du Tertre History, Overview
This Bordeaux property found the inspiration for its name from its location. Du Tertre is situated on the tertre. Tertre in French means hillock or rising ground, which is where the estate is located. With a history dating back to 1143, du Tertre is one of the oldest properties in the Left Bank of Bordeaux. At one point in time, the estate was known as Tertre d’Arsac, due to the amount of vines located in the commune of Arsac. Le Tertre passed through several different owners over the centuries. It was owned by the Arrerac family and Marquis de Segur.
In fact during the 1700’s, what we know of as Chateau du Tertre was owned for a period of time by Pierre Mitchell, a noted glass blower located in Bordeaux. This is a good bit of trivia for you, Pierre Mitchell is known to have created the Jeroboam bottle. It is thought that some of the production of Chateau du Tertre was estate bottled in the 1700’s, due to the glass blowing ability of the owner, Pierre Mitchell. Le Tertre, as the estate was known as in those days, was a popular wine in the Dutch market was sold to Henri de Koenigswarter of the Netherlands. It was during his tenure that the name was changed from Chateau Le Tertre to Chateau du Tertre. The famous estate was also owned by the Cruse family in the early 1900’s.
By World War II, the reputation and production of Chateau du Tertre had declined. In 1961 Chateau du Tertre was acquired by Philippe Gasqueton. If the Gasqueton name sounds familiar to you, it should. Philippe Gasqueton was quite well-known and experienced as a chateau manager as he owned Chateau Calon Segur in St. Estephe as well. Philippe Gasqueton replanted the vineyards of du Tertre as well as renovated the original chateau and modernized entire wine making making facilities. Philippe Gasqueton was able to do this with the help and backing of his Belgian business partners.
Chateau du Tertre The Modern Age
Following the death of Philippe Gasqueton in 1995, his widow sold the property to Eric Albada Jelgersma and Louise Albada Jelgersma. The Jelgersma family was already quite established in Bordeaux, as they were the owners of another Margaux property, Chateau Giscours. The Jelgersma family still owns Chateau Giscours today. The young, Alexander van Beek was brought into manage Chateau du Tertre. It was under the direction of Alexander van Beek that things began turning around for Chateau du Tertre. One of the first big decisions made by van Beek was to discontinue machine harvesting and move to picking by hand.Alexander van Beek did not stop there as you will learn.
Chateau du Tertre Vineyards, Terroir, Grapes, Winemaking
The 80 hectare property of Chateau du Tertre’s vineyard is planted on one large single block. They have 53.5 are hectares under vine. This is one of the largest single blocks in Margaux, as well as in all of the Medoc. It is important to note that their vineyard is also one of the few estates that is the same size today, as it was at the time of the 1855 Classification of the Medoc. The vineyard of Chateau du Terte is planted to 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot. The vine density has also increased, with the majority of the vineyard planted at 9,200 vines per hectare.
On average, the vines are close to 40 years of age. The estate also has older vines that are almost 70 years old. The oldest vines are their Cabernet Franc, which they are using for their own Massal selection. The terroir is mostly gravel, with some sand soils on two, gentle, sloping hills. The elevation close to the chateau graduates up to 27 meters, making it one of the highest peaks in the Margaux appellation. The location for much of the vineyard is situated close to a forest, which produces a slightly cooler, micro-climate, that adds more freshness to the wines. Geographically, they are next to their sister property, Chateau Giscours. In fact, only a small stream separates the two vineyards. Their best parcels are located just behind the chateau, and as well as on the peaks of their gravel hills.
At Chateau du Tertre, experiments started place in 2008 with biodynamic farming techniques with an eye to eventually becoming 100% biodynamic in the future. By 2017, 55% of the vineyard is being farmed using only biodynamic farming techniques. The estate is in the process of converting to exclusive use of biodynamic farming techniques. This is being on a parcel by parcel basis. Each time a parcel is replanted, it is being done using biodynamic farming at the current higher levels of vine density.
Chateau du Tertre Winemaking
For the vinification of Chateau du Tertre, the wines are vinified in a combination of 24 wood tanks, 10 concrete vats, 4 small cement eggs and 16 stainless steel tanks that range in size from 10 hectoliters up to 180 hectoliters, which allows for true, parcel by parcel vinification.
The thermoregulated vats are filled by gravity. Chateau du Tertre vinifies on a parcel by parcel basis at temperatures ranging from 25 degrees to 30 degrees Celsius. Chateau du Tertre was one of the first Bordeaux wine producers to begin using the cement Nomblot egg shaped, cement vats. The estate uses 4 egg shaped vats in total. These vats add more minerality to the wine. Malolactic fermentation takes place in a combination of French oak barrels and vats with 40% of the Malolactic fermentation taking place in barrel and 60% taking place in concrete vats. Chateau du Tertre spends on average 18 months in 50% new, French oak barrels and is lightly fined with egg whites.
The property produces a second wine, Les Hauts de Tertre. Production of Chateau du Tertre is on average close to 16,500 cases of wine per year.
The best vintages of Chateau du Tertre are: 2016, 2015, 2014, 2012, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2005, 2001 and 2000. Since 2000, the team at Chateau du Tertre, headed by Alexander van Beek, has truly been making all the right moves to improve the quality, texture and character in the wines, vintage after vintage.
When to Drink Chateau du Tertre, Anticipated Maturity, Decanting Time
Chateau du Tertre can be enjoyed on the young side with decanting, but it is much better with age. Young vintages can be decanted for an average of 1-2 hours, give or take. This allows the wine to soften and open its perfume. Older vintages might need very little decanting, just enough to remove the sediment. Chateau du Tertre is usually better with at least 10 years of bottle age. Of course that can vary slightly, depending on the vintage character. Chateau du Tertre offers its best drinking and should reach peak maturity between 10-25 years of age after the vintage.
Serving Chateau du Tertre, with Wine, Food, Pairing Tips
Chateau du Tertre is best served at 15.5 degrees Celsius, 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The cool, almost cellar temperature gives the wine more freshness and lift. Chateau du Tertre is best served with all types of classic meat dishes, veal, pork, beef, lamb, duck, game, roast chicken, roasted, braised and grilled dishes. Chateau du Tertre is a perfect match with Asian dishes, hearty fish courses like tuna, mushrooms and pasta as well as cheese.
Starting with the 2014 vintage, Chateau du Tertre began producing a dry white Bordeaux wine, “Tertre Blanc”. The wine is produced from a unique blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Viognier and Gros Manseng. The wine is sold as a Vin de France because most of those grapes are not approved for planting in Bordeaux. The production is tiny, so good luck finding any as only 500 cases are produced each vintage. The white wine of du Tertre can be paired with all types of fresh seafood, shellfish, sushi, sashimi and of course cheese.
Château Château du Tertre Wine Tasting Notes
2 Vintages 1395 Views Sort Vintage Rating
2016 Tertre Blanc ( Vin de France)
Juicy, citrus, honeydew, flowers, vanilla and spice with tropical fruit accents get the wine going. Round, sweet and with some flesh, the fresh, citrus in the end, keeps it refreshing. The wine is vinified in stainless steel tanks and barrel aged in 100% new, French oak. The wine comes from a unique blend of 25% Chardonnay 25% Gros Manseng, 25% Viognier and 25% Sauvignon Blanc.
Apr 29, 2017points - Tasted 567 Views
2015 Tertre Blanc ( Vin de France)
Honeyed grapefruit, nuts, flowers, lemon peel and orange marmalade aromatics present a unique profile. Polished, sweet, yet fresh and vibrant, with a dominant citrus character, this is a fun, early drinker that will stump everyone in a blend tasting. From a unique blend of 42% Chardonnay, 31% Gros Manseng, 16% Viognier and 11% Sauvignon Blanc, the wine is vinified in stainless steel and barrel and aged in 100% new, French oak barrels.
Apr 29, 2016points - Tasted 828 Views