Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere St. Emilion Bordeaux Wine, Complete Guide

Stephan Neipperg St. Emilion Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere St. Emilion Bordeaux Wine, Complete Guide

Everything about Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere St. Emilion, Premier Grand Cru Classe B Bordeaux wine producer profile, with wine tasting notes, wine and food pairing tips, best vintages, wine ratings, a history of the property, information on wine making and terroir, along with wine tasting reviews. If you want to read about other important, Bordeaux Chateaux: Links to all Bordeaux Wine Producer Profiles

Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere History, Overview

Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere started out life with two separate names. It was at one time known as Canon Boitrd and La Gaffeliere-Boitard. This was back in the 19th century. In time, the double naming was made easier. The solution was to combine the names, which created the moniker we know today as Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere. Skipping ahead to the modern era, in 1969, Count Joseph Hubert von Neipperg purchased Canon La Gaffeliere in 1971 from the Meyrat family. The von Neipperg family remain the owners today. Currently, Stephan von Neipperg manages Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere as well as several other St. Emilion estates owned by the family.

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Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere is located just south of the St. Emilion village at the start of the slopes to the plateau. It’s not far from La Gaffeliere and it’s close to the train tracks. You can see Chateau Ausone from certain vantage points on the property. At Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere, Stephan von Neipperg spends a tremendous amount of time working the vineyards throughout the year. The move to sustainable farming was one of the first major changes Stephan von Neipperg made when he began to manage the estate. Other techniques used are during dry periods, the grass is cut or removed from plots that are sensitive to water stress. The vines are regularly earthed up, which helps aeration. To avoid blending both layers of topsoil, only light plowing takes place.

The vineyards of Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere are farmed using 100% organic methods. To help with that process, only organic compost, from their own making that is naturally low in nitrogen is used, and even then, that is always in tiny amounts. The object is not to add extra nutriments to the soil. It is to further the ability of the soil to support life inside its self with micororganisims to regenerate on its own life on a continuing basis Cow manure is mixed with straw which can be used after 9 months. In 2014, Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere was certified as being 100% organic.

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Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere Vineyards, Terroir, Grapes, Winemaking

The 19.5 hectare Canon La Gaffeliere vineyard with 18 planted hectares. The vineyard is planted to 52% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Franc and 8% Cabernet Sauvignon. They have old vines averaging close to 50 years of age. They also have old vines which are close to 80 years of age. The best parcel of vines is in the clay, where you find their oldest vines, which date back to the 1930’s. The terroir of Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere is clay, limestone and sand soils. You find more clay at the top of the peak of their vineyards. The slopes possess a large concentration of clay, which is where you find the largest concentration of Merlot. There is also a thick vein of clay in the subsoil. The topsoil becomes a mix of sand and clay as you travel further from the slopes of the vineyard. The vineyard is one large, contiguous block, which can be subdivided into 4 smaller parcels. Those same 4 blocks can be broken into 26 parcels, which can also be further subdivided. Rather than planting young vines plot by plot, the vines are replaced one vine at a time.

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Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere Winemaking

To produce the wine of Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere, the grapes are whole berry fermented in temperature controlled 12 oak vats which vary in size for 100 to 110 hectoliters.Malolactic fermentation takes place in 100% new, French oak barrels from a total of eight different coopers. The wine is aged on its lees in 100% new, French oak barrels for 15 to 18 months. On average, 5,000 cases of Canon La Gaffeliere are produced each year. There is a second wine, Cote Migon La Gaffeliere. Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere was finally upgraded in the official 2012 St. Emilion Classification to Premier Grand Cru Classe B.

The best vintages of Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere are: 2016, 2015, 2014, 2012, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2005, 2001, 2000, 1998 and 1990. Older vintages are also quite strong from the 1950’s and 1960’s.

Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere makes a stylish wine, with aromas of flowers, earth, fresh fruits, truffle and stone. The wine at its best is silky, rich and pure with the ability to age and evolve.

Serving and Decanting Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere with Wine and Food Pairings

Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere is best served at 15.5 degrees Celsius, 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The cool, almost cellar temperature gives the wine more freshness and lift. Young vintages can be decanted for 2-3 hours. This allows the wine to soften and open its perfume. Older vintages might need very little decanting, just enough to remove the sediment. Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere is best paired with all types of classic meat dishes, veal, pork, beef, lamb, duck, game, roast chicken, roasted, braised and grilled dishes. Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere is also good when matched with Asian dishes, rich fish courses like tuna, mushrooms and pasta.

Stephan von Neipperg owns several other Right Bank vineyards including Clos-de-lOratoire, La Mondotte and Chateau Peyreau in St. Emilion. Stephan von Neipperg also consults various other Bordeaux wine producers in St. Emilion. In Pessac Leognan, Stephan von Neipperg works with Clos Marsellate, in Cotes de Castillon where where he owns Chateau dAiguilhe and in Puisseguin, with Chateau Soleil. Stephan von Neipperg has international interests with wines in other countries.

Currently, he is also involved in a Bulgarian winery and vineyard planted to Bordeaux varietals where they also produce a Syrah from vines planted in the Bessa Valley. The top wine is sold under the name of Enira. In 2005 Stephan von Neipperg added South Africa to the list of wine regions he consults, when he began working with Capaia Wines in the Stellenbosch appellation. In 2015, Stephan von Neipperg announced he was going to become an investor and partner in Capaia Wines, which produce wines from Bordeaux grape varietals.

Château Canon-la-Gaffelière Wine Tasting Notes

26 Vintages 208442 Views Sort    Vintage    Rating

  1. 2016 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. With silky tannins, the wine feels like velvet. The black juicy plums, smoke, espresso, stone and salty mineral characteristics really shine through. There is concentration, complexity and length, offering purity of fruit and sensuous palate teasing textures. The wine was made from a blend of 55% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Franc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, reaching 13.5% alcohol with a pH of 3.6. The harvest took place September 26 to October 15

      95 points - Tasted
  2. 2015 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Deeply concentrated, the wine has this sexy, sensuous nature, with supple, plush tannins and richness that lets you know this is quite special. This will easily score at the top of the range once in bottle.

      95 points - Tasted
    2. Deeply concentrated color leads to a serious escalation of flavor combined with sleek, silky tannins and a saline minerality. There is a dance of freshness, length and depth in the long, spicy finish. On the palate, this wine is soft yet vibrant with a fresh, sweet, black cherry and red licorice finish. Made from a blend of 55% Merlot, 37% Cabernet Franc and 8% Cabernet Sauvignon, the wine reached 13.7% alcohol with a pH of 3.65.

      95 points - Tasted
  3. 2014 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Fresh, flowery, elegant, refined and with a beautiful, purity of fruit, freshness, silky textures and length in its, ripe, sweet, dark, red berry fruit, filled finish. This should age quite nicely.

      94 points - Tasted
    2. Distinctive floral scents with ripe, black raspberry and plum notes are found in the perfume. On the palate, this wine is soft yet vibrant with a fresh, sweet, black cherry and red licorice finish. Made from a blend of 55% Merlot, 37% Cabernet Franc and 8% Cabernet Sauvignon, the wine reached 13.5% alcohol with a pH of 3.58. 93-94 Pts

      94 points - Tasted
  4. 2013 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. With aromatics kicking off with boysenberries, cherries, licorice, smoke and flowers, the wine is medium bodied, soft, forward and elegantly styled, finishing with sweet red cherries on the palate.

      91 points - Tasted
    2. Chocolate-covered plum, brioche, espresso and black cherry scents get your attention. Medium bodied and soft, but lacking the depth of flavor that comes from Cabernet Franc in the blend, the wine will deliver pleasure early in life. Blending 70% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, the wine reached 12.9% alcohol with a pH of 3.6. The yields were 10 hectoliters per hectare, which is the lowest yields since they declassified the wine in 1991. The wine is aging in 70% new oak. 90-92 Pts

      90 points - Tasted
  5. 2012 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Floral, truffle, licorice, cocoa and blackberries on the nose. The wine is full bodied and concentrated, with round, silky textures and sweet, fresh, ripe dark berries in the finish. Still young, 5-8 years will add a lot of complexity and more softness to the wine.

      93 points - Tasted
    2. Lush, polished, earthy and supple, with loads of floral notes, licorice, earth, spice and fresh, dark red berries. The wine is long, fresh and lingers on the palate.

      93 points - Tasted
    3. Harvested over a four-week period from October 10 through November 10, the wine is produced from a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc that is 50/50. On the nose, the wine opens with flowers, licorice, coffee, spice and blackberries. On the palate, the medium-bodied, silky wine is soft with fresh black raspberries and a cherry-filled finish. 91-93 Pts

      93 points - Tasted
  6. 2011 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Medium bodied, soft, silky and focused on its licorice, black cherry, plum and floral character, this soft wine can be enjoyed on release.

      91 points - Tasted
    2. One of the top St. Emilion wines in this difficult year, the floral, earthy, plum, oak and black cherry nose hits all the right notes. Soft, forward, ploished and ready for prime time drinking on release, this is a very nice style of wine.

      91 points - Tasted
    3. From 60% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Franc, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon, the wine is aged in 80% new oak and reached 13.4% alcohol. Espresso, plum, floral, truffle, licorice and chocolate mint are found in the aromas. On the palate, the wine is fresh, sweet, round and lush. 92-93 Pts

      92 points - Tasted
  7. 2010 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Earth, flowers, chocolate mint, plum, vanilla and coffee notes open to a rich, expansive, lush, fresh, structured wine. There is a nice sense of purity to the spicy, silky plum and blackberries sensed in the opulently, textured finish.

      94 points - Tasted
    2. With elements of fresh flowers, coffee, spice, blackberry, earth and plum in the perfume, this lush, round Bordeaux wine is filled with minerality and soft tannins. The wine will be aged in 70% new oak. 93-95 Pts

      95 points - Tasted
    3. 2010 Canon La Gaffeliere is the product of low yields that were only 28 hecoliters per hectare. The wine was produced a blend of 55% Merlot, 35% Cabernet and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon that will be aged in 70% new oak. Licorice, chocolate mint, spice, jammy black raspberries, silky lush textures and long, fresh, sweet chocolate cherry expansive finish are the hall marks of this wine. 93-95 Pts

      94 points - Tasted
  8. 2009 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Blending 55% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Franc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, Neipperg produced a rich, opulent St. Emilion that is filled with licorice, coffee, damp earth and fresh, jammy, dark berries. Sensuous in texture, the wine ends with layers of juicy, ripe, red and black fruits.

      94 points - Tasted
    2. Rich, concentrated and opulent in texture, the wine is filled with flowers, black and red berries, licorice, espresso bean, forest floor, smoke and crushed stone scents. Plush in texture, this sexy St. Emilion ends with a rich, fennel, blackberry jam and plum filled finish.

      94 points - Tasted
    3. 2009 Canon La Gaffeliere was produced using as much of a bio dynamic approach as possible. Herbicides, pesticides, or insecticides are never applied. Fermentation of the uncrushed berries takes place in temperature controlled oak tanks, punctuated by regular pneumatic pigeages. Malolactic is carried out in 100% new barrels from eight different cooperages. The full bodied wine shows minerals, flowers, spice, coffee, leaves, plums, round tannins, berries, and stone in the finish. 92-94 Pts

      93 points - Tasted
  9. 2008 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. This wine offers toasty oak, blackberry, licorice, chocolate and truffle scents. It feels rich, deep and polished on the palate. This Bordeaux wine ends with long, spicy blackberry, kirsch and coca flavors.

      93 points - Tasted
    2. 2008 Canon La Gaffeliere from 50% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon is filled with black fruit, fresh cut herbs, plums and anise. Soft round textures and a long, black fruit filled finish are the hallmarks of this wine. 92 Pts

      92 points - Tasted
    3. 08 Château Canon La Gaffeliere, with 43% cabernet franc, 52% merlot, and 5% cabernet sauvignon, is filled with enticing floral, forest, plum, and spicy oak aromas. Concentrated and fleshy, this full bodied wine exudes freshness, and concludes with ample doses of dark berry and red plum accents. 92-94 Pts

      92 points - Tasted
  10. 2007 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. A solid effort in a difficult vintage, the wine is elegant, fresh, softly textured and medium bodied with an air of truffle, flowers, dark cherry and plums. The tannins have melted into the fabric of the wine, made from a blend of 55% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Franc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon.

      90 points - Tasted
  11. 2006 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Concentrated with dark, red berries, floral, plum, earth, smoke, espresso and licorice accents, the wine is round, sweet, ripe, fresh and just starting to hit its stride. Another few years and this should be even better.

      93 points - Tasted
    2. A nice surprise. With a licorice, espresso, black cherry jam and earthy perfume, the wine is plush, polished and round, ending in a sweet, spicy, black and red fruit filled finish. It's clearly improved over the past few years. I'd let it rest for a few more years before popping another cork.

      92 points - Tasted
  12. 2005 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. This best showing yet for this voluptuous, black cherry, licorice, truffle and earth stained wine. Silky, suave and with room to improve, you ca drink it now, or age it for more complexity and additional velvety textures. The wine was made from a blend of 55% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon.

      95 points - Tasted
    2. What a beauty. While it's obviously young, the wine already offering pleasure with its earth, spice, floral, black cherry, licorice, cocoa and espresso bean nose. Over the past years, the fruit has become much more polished and refined. There is a better sense of purity and more length. You can drink this today with an hour or two of decanting, or allow it another 5-8 years to gain in complexity.

      95 points - Tasted
    3. Smoke, blackberry, plum, boysenberry, stone, coffee, fennel, herbs and spicy chocolate scents open to a rich, opulently textured wine. This round, full bodied, silky St. Emilion feels lush in your mouth. The long fresh, black raspberry, licorice and garrigue flavors in the finish last for at least 40 seconds! This remains my favorite vintage of Canon La Gaffeliere. Still young, another deacde will add a lot of complexity to this exciting wine.

      95 points - Tasted
    4. The exotic, dark berry liqueur and mineral essence kept me going back for another sniff. The palate enjoyed thick sensations of ripe, red and black fruits ending in a silky black, cherry tinged finish.

      93 points - Tasted
  13. 2004 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Floral, cigar, fresh cherry blossom and tobacco on the nose get your focus. With a nice polish to the tannins with fresh plum and cocoa, this is drinking in the sweet spot.

      92 points - Tasted
    2. From a blend of 50% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, notes of flowers, licorice, black cherry, coffee and plums create the aromatics. Lush, soft and round in texture, the finish is filled fresh, sweet, ripe, black and red berries with hints of spice, fennel and coffee. I'd give it another year or two before popping another bottle.

      91 points - Tasted
  14. 2003 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Probably fully mature, with a plum, black raspberry, smoke, herb and truffle filled character, the wine is soft, round and smooth delivering most of what it has to offer today.

      91 points - Tasted
  15. 2001 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. In the sweet spot with floral, earth, spice, black cherry, truffle and fresh herbs in the nose. On the palate, the wine is silky, round and polished, ending with fresh, sweet, ripe, black raspberry, cherry, cocoa and spice.

      91 points - Tasted
  16. 2000 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Soft, silky, smooth and complex, with its ripe, fresh, sweet, plums and cherry notes coupled with licorice, truffle and hints of flowers. This is ready to drink, yet there is no rush to pop a cork. Drink now, or wait a while, either way, you'll be happy.

      94 points - Tasted
    2. Minerality, coffee, black cherry, spice, floral and earthy aromas show this St. Emilion to be developing nicely. Lush, concentrated and round, the wine ends with black licorice and cherry liqueur flavors.

      93 points - Tasted
    3. Licorice, blackberry, dark cherry, spice and fresh herb aromas is pleasing to smell. The wine is round, opulent and lush with ample fruit to keep you interested.

      93 points - Tasted
  17. 1999 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Medium/full bodied, fresh, crisp red fruit, licorice, herbs, and floral notes are easy to find. Soft, silky and fresh, with a bright, red berry and dark cherry finish. This is fully developed and ready for prime time drinking.

      91 points - Tasted
  18. 1998 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Fully mature, medium/full bodied, with a complex array of licorice, truffle, flowers and black cherries in the nose, the wine is smooth, soft and easy to drink. There is no real rush to drink it, but at close to 15, there is no need to age it further either.

      92 points - Tasted
    2. With 30 minutes of decanting, the floral notes were really singing, complicated by black raspberries, earth, smoke and mint. Medium bodied, fresh, elegantly textured, the sweet, pure, plum and cherry flavors are in full force. This is probably at full maturity and while there is no rush to drink it, I'm not sure more age is going to add much to the wine.

      92 points - Tasted
    3. If you have a bottle, pop a cork. It's in the sweet spot of its drinking window. There is no hurry, but the floral, fresh cherry, truffle, chocolate nose is a treat and the silky, soft, fresh plum and dark cherry finish really seal the deal.

      93 points - Tasted
    4. With its earthy, black cherry nose, has resolved most of its tannins. The wine is full bodied, well structured, elegantly styled and ready to drink. Finishes with a note of chocolate covered black fruit.

      92 points - Tasted
    5. Deep ruby in color, tobacco, truffle, blackberry, cherry, minerality, coffee and chocolate scents make up the perfume. In the mouth, the wine feels plush and ends with a sweet black cherry and coffee finish. Still young, this St. Emilion will improve for several more years.

      94 points - Tasted
  19. 1995 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. As this wine edges closer to its 20th birthday, truffle, wet earth, cherries, tobacco and floral elements are in abundance. There is a bit of a tannic, firm, masculine edge in the plummy, spicy, black raspberry finish that remains part of the wines character.

      91 points - Tasted
  20. 1990 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. This is ruby with tea color. Truffle, tobacco, black berries, fennel and fresh herbs aromas start the perfume. Elegant, silky textures and a round mouth feel , coupled with a finish filled with ripe, sweet strawberries make this fully mature, charming wine a treat to drink.

      93 points - Tasted
    2. Blackberry with a hint of jammyness complicated with truffles, earth, cinnamon and chocolate. In the mouth, this full bodied wine displays ample freshness, gobs of sweet ripe and over ripe black fruit with a slight hint of prune that adds to the palate. Lush, rich and opulent, this mature wine offers finesse and sex appeal. At 20, this is showing great. While it might not improve, there is no hurry to drink well stored bottles. If the 90 is this good when little selection was employed, latter vintages are going to rock the house at the same age!

      94 points - Tasted
  21. 1989 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Truffle, spice, stewed black fruit, tar, and 5 spice aromatics. The wine, fully mature, ends with a mélange of red and black fruits in a soft, velvety style on the palate. Owners should drink this sooner than later, since the wine is slowly going to drop its fruit.

      91 points - Tasted
    2. With an expressive nose packed with earth, smoke, floral, cherry, plum, tobacco and spice notes, this medium/full bodied, sensuously textured St. Emilion is fully mature. While there is no hurry to drink it, it's probably not going to improve much from here.

      91 points - Tasted
  22. 1964 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Much better than my previous bottle from the same case, the complex perfume truffle, black cherry liqueur, thyme, forest floor, spearmint and wet earth was really singing. The vibrant wine is soft, with just slightly jagged edges to the texture, finishing with a blast of juicy, ripe plum and licorice notes.

      92 points - Tasted
    2. A muted nose of earth, tobacco, cherry, flowers, root beer and incense couples with a medium bodied, round textured, simple wine that finishes with licorice and earthy, black cherries. This is better on the palate than the nose. The wine began to fade after 30 minutes. Drink up. I am sure this wine has seen better days. That being said, large formats of this wine, could offer a nice experience if well stored.

      85 points - Tasted
  23. 1961 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. This wine was filled with dark chocolate covered cherries, fennel bulb, fudge and espresso notes. This soft textured, fully mature st. Emilion wine finished with black cherries and tart strawberry flavors.

      90 points - Tasted
    2. A surprise. Deeply colored, this plummy, chocolate, truffle, fennel, earthy, spice filled wine offered ample thrills for your nose. In the mouth, this rich, concentrated wine seemed much younger than 5 decades. Concentrated, mouth filling and lush, this wine offered pleasure in every sip. I hope the 05 turns out this well when it hits 50!

      93 points - Tasted
  24. 1959 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Silky, and with that sensational patina of age that only comes from decades in the cellar, this medium bodied, fully mature beauty had a wonderful, earthy bouquet, polished, soft core of ripe, sweet fruits in the middle and elegance blended with sensuous textures in the finish.

      93 points - Tasted
  25. 1955 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. From a perfectly stored bottle, tobacco, earth, forest floor, stone, flowers, cherries, smoke, spice and ash aromas were in full force. Medium/full bodied, with soft textures meshed with the patina of age, this fully mature Bordeaux wine ended with a melange of spicy cherry flavors. It's not often I get to experience wines that are close to 60 years old. It's always a special treat.

      90 points - Tasted
  26. 1952 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière ( St. Émilion Grand Cru)

    1. Sweet ripe cherries, truffles, Cuban cigars, coffee, black pepper, crushed stone, spice and cherry blossoms made for a beautiful perfume. With textures of silk made even better with the patina of age, this delicious wine finished with notes of chocolate, plums, raisins and cherries. Regardless of the score, or the wine, it's always an honor and privilege to taste wines that are 60 years old. It seldom happens and it's always an experience to treasure.

      91 points - Tasted