Le Merle Blanc de Château Clarke 2018 - The Rothschild Collection

The Rothschild Collection

Le Merle Blanc de Château Clarke 2018


Very few Médoc estates produce a white wine, which makes Le Merle Blanc de Château Clarke an intriguing proposition. Despite being a much-loved part of the château’s heritage since 1890 and at one stage accounting for around a quarter of their production, this fabulous wine had almost completely disappeared. Luckily, Baron Edmond de Rothschild revived it.

Le Merle Blanc is created from a blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Sauvignon Gris, Muscadelle and Sémillon, which were picked by hand from just three hectares of 30-year-old vines. 60% was matured in oak (50% new) and the rest in stainless steel tanks for six months. What emerges is bright and breezy with wonderful aromatics. Notes of crisp grapefruit, lemon sorbet, jasmine, lemongrass, peach, quince, acacia honey, delicate wood and a pinch of sea salt all combine in the gorgeous white Bordeaux, which manages to balance its ample richness with a crunchy freshness. Fabulous with buttery fish or roast chicken. In fact, come to think of it, we might have just found our white wine to serve alongside the turkey on Christmas Day.

We all know that the Rothschild family gave the world the First Growths Château Lafite Rothschild and Château Mouton Rothschild, but few wine lovers are aware that they’re also the driving force behind Château Clarke, a winery just a few miles away in the Médoc. Baron Edmond de Rothschild bought the property in 1973 and, being the wealthiest branch of the family due to their banking links, there has been huge investment in it. That has resulted in step-change in quality over recent years, making this a Bordeaux to watch.

The French side of the Rothschild dynasty is legendary in the wine world. In 1853 Nathaniel de Rothschild created Château Mouton Rothschild, and fifteen years later his uncle James Mayer de Rothschild acquired Château Lafite Rothschild. The former is the most flamboyant of Bordeaux’s First Growths and part of the Primum Familiae Vini – an association of the world’s finest family-owned wineries that include the likes of Antinori, Vega Sicilia, Tenuta San Guido of Sassicaia fame, Egon Müller, Pol Roger, the Symington Family Port house and many more. Neighbouring Château Lafite Rothschild has also become one of the most famous and sought-after wines in the entire world. Esteemed wine critic Neal Martin describes it as the “quintessential wine of elegance”, and it’s widely regarded as the most consistent of the First Growths. In 1962 the Lafite branch of the Rothschild family took the “Lafite Spirit” that they’d nurtured on the great terroir of Pauillac and began to expand their empire. Starting in Bordeaux they procured nearby neighbour Château Duhart-Milon, then Château Rieussec in Sauternes and Pomerol’s Château l’Evangile. They then branched out into South America with Viña Los Vascos in Chile and Bodegas Caro in Argentina, then further afield in France with Languedoc’s Domaines d’Aussières and even into northeast China with a new project called Long Dai. The three Rothschild Barons came together in 2007 to create Champagne Barons de Rothschild. All these ventures work to the same exacting standards as the legendary First Growths, befitting of wine’s most iconic family.

£4.4 per 100.00ml

SKU No.: 3415643

Style No.: 870868

Country: France
Region: Bordeaux
Grapes: Sauvignon Blanc, Mixed
Closure: Cork
Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.5%
Volume: 750ml
Allergens: Sulphites

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