Chateau Pabus - Grand vin de Bordeaux

The Challenge of a Prince

Vineyard management

Firstly, the surface remodelling improved natural drainage. After a detailed study of the make-up of the different plots, rootstocks and clones were carefully selected to be the best adapted to the physical and chemical conditions of the ground. The choice of the Merlot and Malbec grape varieties, which are two traditional Bordeaux types, yet rarely brought together, is already distinctive and corresponds to a deliberate decision to be modern.

two traditional Bordeaux types, yet rarely brought together

Planting densities, the number of bunches per vine and rational cultivation techniques have been determined in order to produce top quality fruit. If the fruit isn’t clean, healthy and pure, there can’t be great wine. This will never change. Proactive care in the vine rows produces the basic ingredient.


Winemaking

Pabus wines are also the outcome of the winemaker’s hard work. What would a terroir produce without the craft of Man? Robert S. Dow takes special care to call attention to the people who have created his wines, insisting that in any piece of work, the style is always set by people. The contribution of experts with their knowledge and experience is indispensable to apply the virtues of moderation, balance and respect of the rules in winemaking.

In his quest for excellence, Mr. Dow has provided the property with fantastic installations: one vathouse in which to vinify the first wine in 500-litre casks and a second vathouse with resolutely modern stainless steel tanks in which to make the second wine. There is also a cellar for malolactic fermentation and an ageing cellar.

in any piece of work, the style is always set by people


The processes

Château pabus

The first wine is made in 500-litre French oak casks. It is a simple technique: the grapes are picked at optimal ripeness, destalked and deposited directly in the casks.

Vinification is entirely natural. The best tannins are gently extracted by regularly rotating the casks to keep the grape juice percolating through the cap. Temperatures in the vathouse are regulated to keep fermentation continuously under control. When alcoholic fermentation and soaking is over, these 500-litre casks are emptied into 225-litre barrels made of French oak, so that the wine can undergo malolactic fermentation.

The wines are then aged for 15 to 18 months, depending on the vintage.

The result can be observed as the wine is tasted and opens up its heart, displaying substantial density on the palate and very elegant tannins.

Petit pabus

Grapes from the youngest vines are vinified in small frustum-shaped stainless steel tanks with in-built temperature regulation and a large hatch to facilitate cap punching. Here again, all the technical devices are available to avoid damaging the fruit and to extract this second wine.

The wine is run off into the 500-litre French oak casks in which the first wine is vinified, thereby limiting the impact of the wood, which should only be a support for all the wine’s natural complexity.

The result can be observed as the wine is tasted and opens up its heart, displaying substantial density on the palate and very elegant tannins.