Chateau La Fleur de Gay Pomerol Bordeaux, Complete Guide


Learn everything about Chateau La Fleur de Gay Pomerol with wine tasting notes and wine with food pairing tips. Learn the best vintages, a history of the property, information on vineyards and winemaking. If you want to read about other important, Bordeaux Chateaux: Links to all Bordeaux Wine Producer Profiles

Chateau La Fleur de Gay History, Overview

Chateau La Fleur de Gay is a relatively new wine. The vineyard is owned by the Raynaud and Lebreton families. Chateau La Fleur de Gay made its official debut in 1982.

However, the first true vintage for the wine was made the following year in 1983. It took until 1988 for the wine to truly begin to hit its strides.

The initial vintages contained a small portion of Cabernet Franc in the blend. That soon changed. They stopped blending in any Cabernet Franc and from the mid-1980s. From that point forward, the wine was made from only 100% old vine Merlot.

The idea behind Chateau La Fleur de Gay was to make a 100% Merlot wine produced from the oldest vines from their La Croix de Gay vineyards. Chateau la Croix de Gay is one of the oldest vineyards in Pomerol, dating back to 1777.

Prior to 1982, the grapes used to produce Chateau La Fleur de Gay were always placed into La Croix de Gay. As I mentioned, the vines are old. In fact, many of the vines used for this Cuvee are over 50 years of age.

The Raynaud family also owned Chateau Faizeau in the satellite appellation of Montagne St. Emilion, but they sold that estate as well along with a portion of their Chateau La Croix de Gay vineyard in two separate transactions.

Chateau La Fleur de Gay Vineyards, Terroir, Grapes, Winemaking

Chateau La Fleur de Gay is planted to 91% old vine Merlot and 9% Cabernet Franc. This is different than the original plantings which started out as 100% Merlot. The vines are planted in a specific, small, 2-hectare portion of the best parcel that belongs to Chateau La Croix de Gay.

The terroir is mostly gravel with clay soils on slopes that rise to 38 meters at their peak. Chateau La Fleur de Gay has very good neighbors. The Right Bank chateau is not located far from Chateau Clinet or LEglise Clinet on the edge of the Pomerol Plateau.

However, the parcel of vines is not next to the chateau, it is slightly closer to the center of the plateau. The vineyard of Chateau La Fleur de Gay is planted to a vine density of 6,000 vines per hectare.

To produce the wine of La Fleur de Gay, the wine is vinified in 2 concrete vats that vary in size, with one vat being 170 hectoliters and the other is slightly larger at 190 hectoliters. The wine is aged in 100% new, French oak barrels for an average of 18 months before bottling.

In select vintages, La Fleur de Gay can be a decadently, styled Bordeaux wine. Dr. Alain Raynaud, the noted consultant had a major hand in producing the 1989 and 1990 vintages. Both vintages remain the finest wines this estate has made yet, although 2009 should give them a run for their money.

Alain Raynaud left the estate and pursued other ventures on his own, as the proprietor of Chateau Quinault L’Enclos, and as a consultant to numerous Bordeaux chateaux.

Alain Raynaud, who also works with Colgin Cellars in Napa Valley and Moraga Vineyards in Southern California helped make the outstanding 2009 at La Fleur de Gay.

The best vintages of Chateau La Fleur de Gay are: 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2012, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2006, 2005, 2001, 2000 1998, 1995, 1990 and 1989.

In June 2012, the owners of Chateau Lafite Rothschild purchased a large parcel of vines from La Croix de Gay that allowed them to expand their Pomerol property, Chateau LEvangile. With the consummation of that sale, Dr. Alain Raynaud was no longer associated with his family in either Chateau La Croix de Gay or Chateau La Fleur de Gay.

The style and Character of Chateau La Fleur de Gay

In the best vintages, La Fleur de Gay expresses pure silk and velvet. Layers of dark plums, chocolate, spice, truffle, and opulent textures make this an outstanding Bordeaux wine. However, the wine lacks consistency. In some vintages, the wine is as good as the vintage allows.

In other years, Chateau La Fleur de Gay is not as good as it should be, based on the potential of the vintage. The production is small. It hovers around 1,000 cases per year of Chateau La Fleur de Gay

When to Drink Chateau La Fleur de Gay, Anticipated Maturity, Decanting Time

Chateau La Fleur de Gay can be decanted for an average of 1 – 2 hours, when young. This allows the wine to soften and open its perfume. Older vintages might need very little decanting, just enough to remove the sediment.

Chateau La Fleur de Gay is usually better with at least 7-9 years of bottle age. Of course, that can vary slightly, depending on the vintage character. Chateau La Fleur de Gay offers its best drinking and should reach peak maturity between 9-22 years of age after the vintage.

Serving Chateau La Fleur de Gay with Wine, Food, Pairing Tips

Chateau La Fleur de Gay is best served at 15.5 degrees Celsius, 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The cool, almost cellar temperature gives the wine more freshness and lift.

Chateau La Fleur de Gay is best served with all types of classic meat dishes, veal, pork, beef, lamb, duck, game, roast chicken, roasted, braised, and grilled dishes. Chateau La Fleur de Gay is also good with Asian dishes, hearty fish courses like tuna, mushrooms, and pasta.

Château La Fleur de Gay Wine Tasting Notes

16 Vintages 133,202 Views Sort by Vintage-Rating

2018 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 94

No effort is needed to detect the flowers, plum and licorice packed perfume. Dark in color with lush, silky, textured fruit, the finish with its chocolate covered black raspberry and dark cherry hits all the right notes. 93-95 Pts

1,807 Views   Tasted
2015 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 92

Plummy, rich, plush and polished, the wine is medium bodied, silky and elegant. The fruit is fresh, vibrant and sweet, with lift and polish on the palate. It will need at least 5 years to often and for the oak to come together. 92 Points

2,000 Views   Tasted

Plummy, rich, plush and polished, the fruits are tender with sweetness and the tannins are silky with refinement. 91 - 93 Pts

2,624 Views   Tasted
2014 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 90

Fleshy, soft and forward with espresso bean and dark black cherry in the heart of a soft, oaky finish. From a blend of 85% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Franc, the wine reached 13.25% alcohol. 89-91 Pts

2,205 Views   Tasted
2012 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 90

Earth, wet clay, smoke and black raspberries open the nose. On the palate, the wine is soft, medium bodied and plummy with a blast of black licorice in the finish 90 Points

2,183 Views   Tasted

The medium-bodied, 100% Merlot wine is filled with jammy black raspberries, soft, silky textures and a round, dark chocolate- and cherry-filled finish. 90-92 Pts

2,865 Views   Tasted
2011 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 90

Deep in color with spicy floral, orange blossom and plum, the wine is silky, fresh, tannic and oaky. Hopefully with time, the wine will become better integrated with the oak. 89-91 Pts

2,944 Views   Tasted
2010 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 92

Young, incredibly supple, soft, polished, silky fruit, notes of espresso, dark chocolate, juicy plums, licorice and black cherry, made even better with fresh earth scents. Give this another 5 years or so to continue fleshing out and allowing the oak to better integrate. 92 Points

3,561 Views   Tasted
2009 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 94

Another example of how great 2009 Pomerol is going to be. Pure bottled sex, with its layers of opulent, polished, glycerine filled, ripe, sweet, dark berries, chocolate, earth, licorice, blueberry and floral notes. Rich, plush and hedonistic, when mature, it\'s quite possible the s wine should increase in score. This should turn out to be the best vintage of La Fleur de Gay yet! 94 Points

6,735 Views   Tasted
2008 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 93

From 100% Merlot, smoke, wet earth, black raspberry, chocolate and plum are in evidence. Concentrated, long, soft and velvety, this rich, chocolate covered, black cherry infused wine ends with a pure, silky finish. Give it another 2-3 years. 93 Points

3,711 Views   Tasted
2006 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 92

Really nice Pomerol with the structure to age, that is just starting to display its plummy, chocolate covered, black cherry and truffle charms. Produced from 100% Merlot, give it a few more years for the tannins to soften, as there is a firmness in its texture, this will also help as the wine will continue gaining complexity. 92 Points

4,331 Views   Tasted
2005 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 90

Better on the nose, and in the initial attack than the finish, which is short and simple. The wine was decanted an hour and we kept tasting it over an additional hour and it remained in the same place. The texture is soft and silky, but it just doesn't seem to go anywhere. Perhaps this will get better, but at 11 years of age, knowing this property, I'm thinking this is going to be the wines character. 90 Points

2,602 Views   Tasted

At close to 10 years of age, this is opening nicely. After 60 minutes in the glass and decanter, the wine softened and displayed its earthy, cherry and cocoa essence. Medium bodied, soft and sliky, with a touch of dust in the finish, drink this now, or age it for a few more years. Either way, it's tasty. 92 Points

3,670 Views   Tasted

The wine remains deeply colored. Ripe plums, dark berries, earth and bitter chocolate are easy to find in the nose. Full bodied, with opulent textures on the palate, this deep, rich, fleshy Bordeaux wine feels good in your mouth. Already showing well, this is a 2005 that will drink well young. The finish ends with ripe black raspberries and dark plum flavors. 92 Points

3,353 Views   Tasted
2001 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 91

Fully mature, this medium/full bodied, lush Pomerol is filled with sweet, chocolate covered black raspberries, plums and earthy scents. Soft, elegant and supple in texture, this is ready for prime time drinking. 91 Points

5,283 Views   Tasted
2000 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 93

The last bottle in my case. Such is life. And as is often the case, the last bottle was the best bottle as this example showed an opulent character with silky tannins and layers of sweet, ripe, fleshy, polished dark red fruits, licorice, and wet earth and a nice floral accent. If you have a bottle, this is the right time to be drinking it, as it is probably at its absolute peak. 93 Points

265 Views   Tasted

1 hour in the decanter allowed the wine to fill out, soften and show off its round textured, dark plum, bitter chocolate, licorice and cherry character. The tannins are a bit firm here, and initially, there was a bit of olive, and herb, but most of those characteristics faded with air. My last bottle from the case. On to the 2009, in a few years. 92 Points

2,902 Views   Tasted

Cinnamon, kirsch liqueur, truffle, black raspberry and mocha make up the perfume. Soft and round in texture, this medium bodied wine ends with a fresh, spicy, black cherry filled finish. This is drinking very well today. It could improve a bit over the years, but there is no reason not to pop a bottle today to see how it\'s tasting. 91 Points

3,808 Views   Tasted

Drinking in the sweet spot, with silky textures, sweet plum, cherry, chocolate and licorice notes, the wine took about 30 minutes to soften before ending with earthy, spicy, black raspberries and cocoa on in the end notes. 92 Points

3,356 Views   Tasted

Lots of earth, smoke, black cherries, plum, truffle and spice in the nose. The medium bodied wine seems to have lost a bit of fruit and flesh since the last time I tasted it. I'd probably drink this over the next 5 years or so. 91 Points

4,320 Views   Tasted

Smoke, coffee, wet earth and spicy black plums, luscious, round textures and a sweet, blackberry finish. This is drinking great today. Based on how older vintages are performing, I’d drink this over the next decade. 92 Points

5,045 Views   Tasted

This offers a chocolate covered, blackberry and truffle nose. Between medium and full bodied, this soft textured wine finishes with an elegant, black raspberry and dark cherry profile. 91 Points

3,765 Views   Tasted

Aromatics filled with notes of chocolate covered plums, assorted black fruits and hints of licorice. Soft, ripe and plush on the palate. Good body and concentration with an enjoyable, albiet short finish of red and black fruits. This is drinking very well today, although I'm going to wait 2-3 more years before digging into my case. 92 Points

2,777 Views   Tasted
1998 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 90

1998 La Fleur de Gay is already fully mature. Chocolate, blackberry and rhubarb scents are easy to find. Medium/full bodied with a slightly lean personality and showin a lack of concentration, from a vintage like 1998, I keep expecting more. 90 Points

3,606 Views   Tasted

The wine lacks the ripeness, flesh and concentration found in the 89 and 90 produced by the Chateau. The yields may have been too high in 98 to produce a great wine. Fully mature. Drink up. 88 Points

3,337 Views   Tasted

The wine lacks the ripeness and concentration found in the 89 and 90. The yields may have been too high in 98 to produce a great wine. For the vintage, this is lean and not fully ripe. 88 Points

3,355 Views   Tasted
1990 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 93

Slowly fading from its hedonistic peak, this is still an outstanding wine with plenty of Pomerol character. Flowers, chocolate, licorice, cherry and tobacco scents are right in front of you. Medium bodied, elegant, soft and available, the silky cherries and dark chocolate finishes with a bit of dust in the texture. Popped and poured, decanting is not necessary, and neither is further aging. 93 Points

3,333 Views   Tasted

Slowly working my way through a full case, this is fully mature, and perhaps is already gently slipping into that good night. the nose, with its rose petal, truffle, cocoa and cherry aromatics brings you to a soft, medium bodied, elegant, silky wine with freshness and good quality fruit. But it's not a wine to age further. Drink up and enjoy. 92 Points

3,578 Views   Tasted

Spice, mocha, red and black plums, truffle and smoke aromas lead to a round, soft textured, supple, wine. This is fully mature. It is not showing the same opulence expressed in previous bottles. While still an outstanding Pomerol, to get the most of the chocolate, plum, spice and ripe cherry personality, I'm going to consume my remaining bottles over the next 5 years as this is just starting to gently fade away. 92 Points

5,610 Views   Tasted

One of the fun things about working your way through a case of wine is understanding that each bottle develops at a different pace and sometimes to different levels as well. This was a better bottle of 1990 La Fleur de Gay than the previous example. With its truffle, black cherry, spice, chocolate and earthy profile, the rich, polished, sensuous textures made this wine into a delicious treat. And while it's fully mature, based on this bottle, there is no hurry to drink it. 94 Points

5,452 Views   Tasted

Produced from 100% old vine merlot, this beautiful Pomerol offers enticing scents of licorice, truffle, plums, blackberries, flowers, earth, tobacco and dark cherries. Silky, round and sensuous in texture, this hedonistic wine is at its apogee. This sexy wine ends with soft, long, plum, chocolate and black cherry finish. There is no reason to delay your gratification any longer as the wine is fully mature. 93 Points

3,763 Views   Tasted

Ripe plums, blackberries and spices blend into an intoxicating perfume. But, the lush, decadent, full-bodied, opulent mouth feel is why I love Pomerol. This personifies liquid silk. While fully mature, there is no rush to drink it. 94 Points

4,332 Views   Tasted

Asian spice, oak and jammy red & black fruits. Medium bodied. Cherries and strawberries on the palate. Nice finish, but I’ve had better bottles. 90 Points

2,736 Views   Tasted
1989 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 93

My last bottle from the case. Such is life. Fully developed, with a truffle, cigar box and earthy, red berry nose, the wine is medium/full bodied, with soft, silky tannins and an earthy, plum filled nose. This has lost some of its weight and depth and has started its slow decline. There is no urgency to drink up, but it's not a wine to hold for further aging. 93 Points

2,616 Views   Tasted

Nice wine, but clearly, this is starting to fade. The previous levels of rich fruits lack the levels of intensity that used to be so apparent. Still, it's a nice, medium bodied, earthy, sweet cherry and truffle expression. But it requires drinking over the next few years. 91 Points

5,626 Views   Tasted

Smoke, truffle, cherry, floral and chocolate aromas kept your nose interested in what was in the glass. Medium/full bodied, with soft, silky tannins and velvet textures, the wine is fully mature and delivers a delicious, earthy, black raspberry, Pomerol tasting experience. There is no reason to continue aging this wine. It's not falling apart. But it's unlikely there is anything to gain with more time in the bottle. 93 Points

3,360 Views   Tasted

The explosive nose of red and black fruits, toffee, earth, mocha and jam is intoxicating. But, that's only the beginning. The velvety, lush, silky, opulent mouth feel is striking. The fruit tastes ripe displaying a decadent, rich character. The lengthy finsih is pure pleasure. This fully mature wine will drink well for at least another 12-15 years 95 Points

4,208 Views   Tasted
1988 Château La Fleur de Gay  (Pomerol) 92

The first in the run of strong vintages is still showing well. In fact, it's fared better than a lot of wines from 1988. Rich, plummy fruits, round, soft, elegant, sensuous textures and a blast of chocolate covered cherries, mint, truffle, tobacco and thyme to round things out. Fully mature, there is no reason to hold this any longer. 92 Points

2,178 Views   Tasted