• U'wine

Back to our U'wine Tours En-Primeurs 2023

  • Fri, May 17, 2024 at 18:00
Château Cheval Blanc, Bordeaux
During the prestigious En-Primeurs week in Bordeaux, a veritable rendez-vous for wine lovers and professionals, we had the privilege of taking our clients to the estates for the occasion. Nestling in the heart of the region's most emblematic vineyards, they offered an immersion into the world of Bordeaux wine. Between discovering the winemaking process, meeting passionate winemakers and exclusive tastings of future vintages, each visit was more wow than the next. We were lucky enough to visit no fewer than 12 estates over 4 days.

En-Primeurs 2023 in Bordeaux

The 2023 Bordeaux En-Primeurs are generating considerable interest among wine lovers and industry professionals. This preview sales campaign provides an opportunity to acquire wines that are still maturing at prices that are generally more advantageous, including this year, where a downward trend in prices is noticeable. The weather conditions in 2023, marked by a hot, dry summer, favoured excellent ripening of the grapes, with an early harvest and good aromatic concentration. Initial tastings reveal wines with good structure, fine tannins and appreciable freshness.

Our opinion on En-Primeurs 2023

En-Primeurs Day n°1

To kick off this En-Primeurs week in style, we headed to Château Smith Haut Lafitte, where we had the pleasure of discovering the white and red wines of the 2023 vintage thanks to an expert presentation by Yann Laudeho Leroy, the voluble cellar master. Before the tasting, we were even given a tour of the emblematic cellars, a most impressive experience. To round off our visit, we made a short diversions to the Château's cooperage, which is renowned for producing its own barrels. Last year, King Charles III himself tried his hand at handling the staves.

More about Château Smith Haut Lafitte

Château Fieuzal followed. Welcomed by Stephen Carrier, the technical director, we were able to discover the 2023 vintage and compare it to the 2018 vintage, which Stephen kindly offered to let us taste. He explained all the stages involved in making the wine, making the process accessible to almost everyone!

At Fieuzal, each of the 19 vats is named after one of the grandchildren of the estate's Irish owners. Not many Augustins, Philippines or Jules, but rather Eoghan, Hugh and Candelaria. A real James Joyce novel. A little bonus? A jar of honey produced at the Château offered to each of us!

More about Château Fieuzal

To round off our first day in the heart of the Pessac-Léognan appellation, we were invited to Château Olivier. Eleonor de Bethmann and her technical director Philippe Stoeckle welcomed us to a delightful 12th century château listed as a Monument Historique, with its moat and even a brand new drawbridge! 

We were lucky enough to take part in an advanced tasting session, sampling Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot wines grown on different types of soil and matured in a variety of ways (wine globe or oak barrels). It was a fascinating discovery, even for the uninitiated, who could see the differences. We then dined at the owner's table and tasted, among other wines, a Château Olivier 2015. A most enjoyable evening!

More about Château Olivier

En-Primeurs Day n°2

After an intense first day, we headed to Pauillac. A warm welcome from Marine Lemmens at Château Grand-Puy Ducasse was followed by a tasting of the estate's Primeur wines. We were also impressed by the new cellars (still under construction), with their innovative, grandiose architecture featuring tanks suspended from the ceiling, tank lifts and skylights in rooms of immense volume. A sight for sore eyes!

More about Château Grand-Puy Ducasse

We arrived in Saint-Estèphe for a visit to the cellars of Château Meyney, where the cellar master gave us a very detailed explanation of the wine-making process. After the primeur tasting, we were treated to a superb lunch, accompanied by a tasting of Grand Puy Ducasse 2013 and Château Meyney 2019.

More about Château Meyney

The end of this first U'wine Tour en Primeurs came in Saint-Julien at Château Gruaud Larose. We also tasted the estate's en primeur wines. Each of us even received a special gift: an exclusive 2023 vintage ceramic barrel bung. The tour continued with a visit to the modern metal tower, which bears a striking resemblance to a cheese grater. Apart from its resemblance, it offers a breathtaking view of the Saint-Julien and Beychevelle vineyards. It's a sight for sore eyes!

More about Château Gruaud Larose

En-Primeurs Day n°3

On our penultimate day, we set off for Château Haut-Bages Libéral. Welcomed by Thomas Bontemps, the estate's technical director, we toured the vineyards with him. We then visited the winery, where we admired one of the estate's octagonal vats, which was highly original! Then, of course, we tasted the Primeur wines: 

  • Ceres 2023
  • Château Haut-Bages Libéral 2023
  • Château Ferrière 2023
  • Château Durfort-Vivens 2023

More about Château Haut-Bages Libéral

We arrived at Château Siran, where we were warmly welcomed by Château owner Édouard Miailhe. The tour of the vat room and cellar was extremely interesting. We also had the opportunity to visit the collection cellar, where a number of precious objects were on display: tastevins, pots jacquots, tonnelets, bacchus, a Vieillard plate, an old wine bottle, an amphora dating from Roman times found in the Mediterranean, and illustrated labels dating from 1980 to 2005... yes, all in one place! For the tasting, we sampled S de Siran 2023 and Château Siran 2023.

    More about Château Siran

    We headed for Château Branas Grand Poujeaux, where a trip in the owner's old Land Rover to explore the Château's vineyards awaited us. As the saying goes, after effort comes comfort. We then continued our visit with a cocktail reception ‘just like at home’ in the very residence of Arjen Pen, the owner... what class! We were able to taste the 2023 En-Primeurs wines and the 2022 vintage directly from the vat. Then the 2018, 2019, 2020 vintages, and even the 2011 and 2021 vintages, so that we could observe the evolution of each one.

      More about Château Branas Grand Poujeaux

      En-Primeurs Day n°4

      For our final day, we headed to Saint-Émilion. First stop: Château Pavie. We had the privilege of discovering the 2023 vintage of Clos Lunelles, Château Montbousquet, Arômes de Pavie and, to top it all off, the first wine of Château Pavie. An incomparably smooth experience on the palate! This premier grand cru classé is full of promise for the future.

      Cellar master Jean-Baptiste Pion, who is celebrating his 26th vintage at Pavie, spoke to us with pride about this vintage, which he believes will be even more successful than the 2022 vintage. He was also kind enough to let us taste the olive oil produced by the Perse family in Les Baux de Provence, a real treat for the taste buds!

        More about Château Pavie

        We were then met by François Despagne, who gave us a very warm welcome to Château Grand Corbin Despagne. A captivating wine enthusiast, he won over the whole group by letting us taste a 2023 vintage that was already very pleasant on the palate. We also had the pleasure of discovering his clairet, a little treat of his own, offering a fine summer alternative to the traditional rosé. 

        During the meal, in addition to the 2019 and 2016 wines, we had the privilege of tasting a 1983 Château Grand Corbin Despagne. A rare opportunity that we all relished. As a bonus, we had the opportunity to visit Mr Despagne's cellar, and our very own Julie, Personnal Shopper at U'wine, noted that there was still some 1986 vintage left...

          More about Château Grand Corbin Despagne

          Finally, it was at Château de Ferrand that we brought this wonderful week of En-Primeurs to a close. Château de Ferrand is owned by the Bic family. As well as visiting the cellars and tasting the 2023 vintage, we had the chance to take a complete tour of the estate and discover the remarkable collection of works created... with Bic, of course. An extraordinary collection! What's more, a magnificent fresco, created with 8 Bic pens and taking 6 months to complete, adorned the walls of the tasting room, illustrating the four seasons of the vine. 

          Gonzague de Lambert, the Château's technical director, also gave us a short course on pruning the vines. An unforgettable experience!

            More about Château de Ferrand

            Fine wine is worth your passion

            Our team that we call the U’Wine Makers are here to serve you with great passion and commitment. We share the culture of the Grands Crus with excellence, passion and innovation, offering wine lovers from all over the world enjoyment and excitement. We guide them through the process of creating, building up and successfully managing their wine cellar and offer them access to a wine collection made up of the top 1% of the finest terroirs in the world.
            Fine wine is worth your passion
            • 825 000 bottles

              with a total value of 40 million euros.

            • Secure delivery

              Break-free delivery with our technology.

            • The 1% of the planet

              261 top domains in the world.

            The Cave INVEST offer and the Cave CONSO offer have been the subject of information documents registered by the Autorité des Marchés Financiers.