Chateau Louis St. Emilion Bordeaux, Complete Guide

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

Chateau Louis History, Overview

Previously known as Chateau Rol de Fombrauge, this Saint Emilion property was purchased in 2006 by Thierry de la Brosse. One of the first decisions made by Thierry de La Brosse was to hire the team of Stephane Derenoncourt to help him transform Rol de Fombrauge into what we know of as Chateau Louis.

In 2008, Chateau Louis was increased in size to 3.8 hectares after the owner was able to purchase additional, Grand Cru vineyard land in the Saint Emilion appellation.

Thierry de la Brosse is a co-owner of the world’s most revered and most expensive bistro, L’Ami Louis in Paris. It’s easy to see where Chateau Louis found its new name.

For the record, if anyone does not know, L’Ami Louis makes the world’s finest roast chickens you’re ever going to eat. And even better than that, they have the only 100 Pt potato dish on the planet! But I digress and dream about that potato dish.

Chateau Louis Vineyards, Terroir, Grapes, Winemaking

The 5.2 hectare Right Bank vineyard is planted to 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc, which is typical of this part of St. Emilion. Chateau Louis has old vines. On average, the vines are close to 43 years of age.

The vineyard is planted to a density of 6,600 vines per hectare. However, some of the new plantings are done at a much higher density of 8,300 vines per hectare. The terroir is clay and limestone soils that are often found in this part of the appellation.

Serious vineyard management takes place at Chateau Louis. They never use any type of herbicide. Cover crops are planted, which helps add life to the Saint Emilion soils and keep the soils dry. Harvesting remains entirely manual. Yields can be quite small. As an example, in 2010, yields were only 12 hectoliters per hectare! 

To produce the wine of Chateau Louis, the whole berries are fermented in small, open-top, French, oak tanks with regular pigeages. The total maceration time runs 30 to 32 days.

Malolactic fermentation takes place in oak barrels. The wine spends six to eight months on its lees with regular stirring during the aging process. The wine of Chateau Louis is aged in up to 75% new, French oak barrels for between 15 to 16 months before bottling.

The best vintages of Chateau Louis are: 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2012, 2010 and 2009.

On average the production is close to 2,000 cases of wine per year.

When to Drink Chateau Louis, Anticipated Maturity, Decanting Time

Chateau Louis needs some time before it can be enjoyed. Young vintages can be decanted for an average of 1 hour or more. This allows the wine to soften and open its perfume.

Older vintages might need very little decanting, just enough to remove the sediment. Chateau Louis is usually better with at least 3-5 years of bottle age. Of course, that can vary slightly, depending on the vintage character. Chateau Louis offers its best drinking and should reach peak maturity between 4-14 years of age after the vintage.

Serving Chateau Louis with Wine, Food, Pairing Tips

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

Chateau Louis is best paired with all types of classic meat dishes, veal, pork, beef, lamb, duck, game, roast chicken, roasted, braised, and grilled dishes. Chateau Louis is also good when matched with Asian dishes, hearty fish courses like tuna, mushrooms, and pasta. Of course, any of those amazing bistro dishes at L’Ami Louis in Paris would be just fine as well. Especially that 100 Pt potato dish!

Chateau Louis makes a second wine that is usually produced from 100% Merlot, La Reserve de Louis. La Reserve de Louis comes from a specific 1-hectare parcel of vines. Not much wine is made at the estate. Production of Chateau Louis is on average about 600 cases of St. Emilion wine each vintage.

Château Louis Wine Tasting Notes

10 Vintages 16,745 Views Sort by Vintage-Rating

2020 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 92

Dark, round and filled with deep, sweet, lushly textured black fruits, licorice, smoke, coffee and spice, the fruit is silky, sweet, long and fresh. Opulent and juicy, this is a beautiful, hedonistic wine for pleasure seekers. 91-93 Pts

1,308 Views   Tasted
2018 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 92

Fresh and fleshy, with ample layers of licorice, espresso, chocolate covered black plums and cherries. Round, lush, silky and fruity, with a solid dark, red pit fruit finish, this is going to offer fine drinking for at least 15 years or more. 92 Points

771 Views   Tasted

The fruit is ripe, rich, fleshy and round. The tannins are silky and the palate is loaded with plums, cherry, licorice and espresso. You can drink this fairly early for pleasure. 91-93 Pts

1,191 Views   Tasted
2017 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 89

Dark in color with a ripe, dark chocolate, plum and cherry character profile, you also find ample lift, with a kiss of oak in the finish. 89 Points

1,307 Views   Tasted
2016 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 91

Round, lush, polished and packed with ripe, sweet, earthy, smoky, dark red pit fruits, the wine is round, open and while it will be easy to drink young, you can age it for more complexity. 91 Points

1,046 Views   Tasted

Silky, soft, round, fresh, ripe red fruits, thyme and earth, the wine is medium bodied with a forward approach and should drink well young. 90 Points

1,345 Views   Tasted
2015 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 91

Polished, silky, round, dark red fruits, licorice and espresso in a tasty, forward style. 91 Points

1,260 Views   Tasted
2014 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 89

With a black cherry core, this wine is soft, forward and easy to like with a plumy charm. 88-90 Pts

1,317 Views   Tasted
2012 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 89

90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc produced a wine with coffee, licorice and earth. There is a sense of minerality in the soft, red berry finish. 88-90 Pts

1,186 Views   Tasted
2011 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 88

Earthy, jammy black raspberry scents open to a round, ripe, soft-textured blend of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc that finishes with chocolate and black cherry. 88-89 Pts

1,041 Views   Tasted
2010 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 91

Rich, silky, lush, concentrated, fresh and focused on ripe plums, licorice, black cherries and espresso bean that are further complicated by floral notes. This is still quite young. Yet, due to its ripe tannins and round textures, with air, you can drink this today. Or let it sleep for a few more years if you have patience. 91 Points

1,982 Views   Tasted
2009 Château Louis  (St. Émilion) 90

Blending Merlot with 20% Cabernet Franc, produced from low yields close to 13 hectoliters per hectare produced a ripe, rich, juicy St. Emilion packed with licorice, vanilla, black cherry and spicy plums. Give this a few more years before popping a bottle. 90 Points

2,991 Views   Tasted