Bordeaux Château Picque Caillou
One of the last bastions of winemaking actually in Bordeaux (the others include Haut Brion and Pape Clément, none too shabby neighbours), Picque Caillou remain the Calvet family home.
Despite its long history, it was not until 2006 when Paulin Calvet took over the running of the property that Picque Caillou's reputation was made. Coming from a long line of négociants, Calvet learnt his trade from the indomitable Ets. Jean-Pierre Moeuix in Libourne and he has since refined and advanced every aspect of the viticulture and vinification at the Château.
Vineyards and Vinification
The clue is in the name when it comes to the soil of Picque Caillou. ‘Caillou’ means pebble or stone in French, so as you might expect the vineyards are characterised by their pebbly soils, deposited by the Garonne river over thousands of years.
This fast-draining gravel means deep-rooted vines and a warm environment kickstarts an early vine-growing season. Traditional ploughing takes place in the vineyards. Vines are pruned in the Bordelaise style and the fruit is hand harvested over a period of about 6 weeks. 20.5 hectares are given over to the black grape varieties; Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot, and the remaining 2.7 hectares are planted with Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon.
Their red wine undergoes fermentation and maceration in stainless steel vats, before further post-fermentation maceration and malolactic fermentation. The red then sees 12 months in oak barrels, 30 % of which are new French Oak.
Their whites are fermented and then aged in barrels, 20 % new oak, with weekly stirring of the lees.
We offer Picque Caillou’s flagship red on our list all year round, as well as en primeur with a tiny allocation of their delicious Sauvignon / Semillon blend. Picque Caillou offers extremely good value for money, quietly getting on with producing good vintages year on year.
Find their website here: http://www.picque-caillou.com/