Friday, December 28, 2012

Lunch at Château Beauséjour (AOC Puisseguin-St. Emilion) – a Vin Bio de Bordeaux - with Owner and Wine Maker Gerard Dupuy, France

Picture: Christian G.E. Schiller and Gerard Dupuy at his Château Beauséjour

The Bordeaux Tour in September 2012, organized by Annette Schiller, Ombiasy Wine Tours, was very successful in providing a broad overview of winemaking in the Bordelais. As part of the attempt to offer a broad perspective, we had lunch with Gerard Dupuy at his Château Beauséjour. This was preceded by vineyard and cellar tour.

Gerard Dupuy is not one of the 300 so winemakers in Bordeaux, who produce a premium  Bordeaux that sells en primeur for several hundreds of Euros per bottle. No, Gerard Dupuy is one of the other 15.000 winemakers that are not in the limelight and who have to struggle against the competition of wines from all over the world, including the New World. But Gerard Dupuy’s wines are interesting and special for at least 2 reasons. He produces – like so many others – good value Petit Chateau Bordeaux wines and he makes them organically.

Pictures: Holger Krimmel, Weinfreundeskreis Hochheim, Annette Schiller, Ombiasy Wine Tours, Gerard Dupuy, and Gerard Dupuy with the Chef of  Auberge du Village” in 33330 Saint Christophe des Bardes.

The lunch and the vineyard and cellars tour were among the highlights of the September 2012 Bordeaux Tour.

See for more:
Bordeaux Trip September 2012, France

Gerard Dupuy produces wine under different labels: Chateau Beausejour (AOC Puisseguin-St.Emilion), Chateau Langlais (AOC Puisseguin-St. Emilion) and Domaines de la Grande Courraye (Castillon Cotes de Bordeaux). All Wines are Bio Wines, Certified by Ecocert.

For on earlier posting see:
Vin Bio de Bordeaux - At Château Beauséjour in AOC Puisseguin-St.Emilion, France

AOC Puisseguin-St. Emilion 

Puisseguin-St. Emilion lies at the heart of the four satellite titles of the St. Emilion appellation on the right bank. The grape varieties permitted here are Merlot, Malbec, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Thus, Puisseguin-St. Emilion produces only red wines. Merlot is predominant, most often partnered with Cabernet Franc.

Pictures: Lunch at Chateau Beausejour

To qualify for the Puisseguin-St. Emilion appellation, wines must contain a minimum of 11% alcohol and come from vineyards planted to a density of less than 5500 vines per hectare. Puisseguin-St.Emilion was granted AOC status in 1936. 753 hectares of vine planted areas belong to the appellation.

The 4 St. Emilion satellites are St.Georges-Saint-Emilion, Montagne-St.Emilion, Lussac-St.Emilion and Puisseguin-St.Emilion itself – all located to the north of St.Emilion town. They are known as satellites because the area's more prestigious wine estates historically resented these supposedly inferior wines using the St.Emilion name.

Chateau Beausejour

Chateau Beausejour is Gerard Dupuy’s base, in the village of Puisseguin. It is a AOC Puisseguin-St.Emilion. The vineyard area totals 13.5 hectares. Gerard Dupuy told us that the clay and limestone soil of Chateau Beausejour is planted with Merlot (73%), Cabernet Franc (22%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (5%). All grapes are organically grown, certified by Ecocert.

Picture: Chateau Beausejour

Château Langlais

This is also an AOC Puisseguin-St.Emilion, with the vineyard area totaling 12 hectares.

Domaine de la Grande Courraye 

The vineyards of Domaine de la Grande Courraye are in the Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux appellation. I did not ask Gerard, but my hunch is that Domaine de la Grande Courraye is not more than a name under which the wine from his vineyard in Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux is sold.

Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux

East of St. Emilion and its 4 satellites, above the town of Castillon, lie the Côtes de Castillon and the Côtes de Francs AOCs. Côtes de Castillon is an appellation for red wines only.

The dominant grape variety is Merlot (70%). Cabernet-Franc (20%) and Cabernet-Sauvignon (10%) account for the rest.

Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux was recognized AOC only quite recently (1989). For a long time the wines of Castillon were only used as complementary alternatives to enhance Saint-Emilion blendings in poor years. Until 2009, these wines were sold as Cotes de Castillon. In 2009, the Cotes de Castillon appellation was merged with several other Bordeaux cotes to form the new Cotes de Bordeaux title.

Castillon has risen from around 2,450 hectares in 1982 to 3,250 today. During the last 25 years or so, several growers of Saint-Emilion, Pomerol  and other famous areas have recognized the Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux’s potential and invested in local vineyards. One of them is Stephan de Niepperg, who has acquired Château d'Aiguilhe.


Ecocert is an inspection and certification body established in France in 1991. Ecocert has developed its own international network. With 23 offices and subsidiaries, Ecocert operates and offers its services in over 80 countries.

In the Vineyard of Chateau Beausejour

Pictures: In the Vineyard with Gerard Dupuy

Gerard Dupuy: “The refusal of chemical treatments at our wineries dates back to their appearance on the market after 1945. We practice the total grass cover. This method allows regulating the ecosystem in a monoculture, while limiting soil erosion. In our vineyards, wild tulips thrive in the vineyard rows in the spring.” The average age of the vines is 40 years.

In the Cellar

Moving on to cellar, there he follows the natural wine philosophy. Gerard Dupuy: “In the cellar, we use a minimalist approach. Our wines are aged for a period of 12 to 24 months in oak barrels.” All of his wines are made at Château Beauséjour.

Pictures: In the Cellar with Gerard Dupuy


Lunch was fabulous. We started out with an aperitif in the front yard and then moved into the Chateau for a wonderful 3-course meal and Gerard Dupuy’s wines.

Pictures: Lunch at Chateau Beausejour

The menu was prepared by the Chef of the “Auberge du Village” in 33330 Saint Christophe des Bardes. It was excellent:

Duo of Foie Gras
Tornedos of Duck Breast with Sauce Bordelaise
Chocolate Variations.

Jane Anson on Auberge du Village in 33330 Saint Christophe des Bardes : “Just the kind of local restaurant you look for – inexpensive, simple and charming - and it’s very popular. The wine list is short, but well chosen (hard not to be when you are surrounded by Saint Emilion Grand Cru Classés) and as keenly priced as the food.”

schiller-wine: Related Postings

Saint Emilion Wines and their Classification, Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux Wines and their Classifications: The Basics

Vin Bio de Bordeaux - At Château Beauséjour in AOC Puisseguin-St.Emilion, France

Malbec World Day 2012 - Malbec in Bordeaux, France

Château Brane-Cantenac, Deuxieme Grand Cru Classe en 1855, Margaux – A Profile, France

Bordeaux Trip September 2012, France

The 5 Premiers Grands Crus Chateaux en 1855 of Bordeaux, France

The Wine Empire of the von Neipperg Family in France, Bulgaria and Germany

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