Well situated on one of the highest hills in the Côtes de Bourg appellation on the right bank of the Gironde estuary, Château Puybarbe lies in the village of Mombrier and the name of the château comes from the eponymous highest point hereabouts, a gravelly knoll that provides a view of Bordeaux itself.
Indeed, the hills locally are known as the ‘little Switzerland of the Gironde’, no doubt with a Gallic tongue pushed firmly into the cheek!
Owned by the Orlandi family since 1952 the estate they acquired originally comprised only 7 hectares but has grown to 35 hectares on well-drained, undulating calcareous clay. The plantings here are 65% merlot and 35% cabernet sauvignon.
A great deal of work done to ensure that the right grapes were planted in the right terroir as the family expanded their holdings, and a new chai was built in 2000 so that the fruit could be vinified at the property itself, with a sorting table for the arrival of the harvest and a mechanical transport system that avoids the use of pumps to move the grapes and must around the winery. The vats are all thermos-regulated stainless steel and the blend is 80% merlot and 20% cabernet sauvignon.
The Cuvée Apanage takes its name from a French term for land in the gift of royalty, estates or funds given to a third person, usually royal offspring, by the crown.