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Château La Gaffelière

Premier Grand Cru Classé Saint-Émilion

A great wine deep-rooted in the heart of St Emilion

Refusing to bend to fashion trends, our family claims a vintners’ signature, typically French, inscribed between tradition and modernity. This respect of the terroir is linked to our origins. We are born here in this vineyard with its unique location backing onto the southern hillside of St Emilion.

The blend of wines from the slope and the foot of the hillside produces a nectar, which is powerful, racy and silky. This harmony is found in each vintage of our estate.
We like to share our wine, to show its finesse and elegance, the result of a know-how passed down through generations.

Comte de Malet-Roquefort & Alexandre de Malet-Roquefort

96/100

Wine Advocate, Robert Parker (avril 2008)

The finest La Gaffeliere I have ever tasted, the prodigious 2005 boasts a dense ruby/purple color in addition to a flamboyant bouquet of lead pencil shavings, creme de cassis, blackberries, smoked meats, incense and Asian spice. Fabulously deep and full-bodied as well as ethereal and exceptionally elegant for its explosive richness and intensity, its lightness of being reflects the vineyard’s sensational terroir. This succulent beauty appears to be approachable, but that belies some significant tannins. Anticipated maturity : 2014-2030+

17/20

Grand Guide Des Vins de France 2008

Intensively colored, a consistency of an amazing texture, it is a great intense and expressive wine. Conveying, without caricature, black fruits and roasting hints, deep and full of sap.

18/20

Guide Gault&Millau 2008

2005 will be fabulous

18/20

Decanter (Mai 2006)

« A very big wine for the vintage, with impressive body, intense tannins and precise truffle aromas. Will certainly make a great bottle.

92-94/100

Wine Spectator, James Suckling (avril 2006)

Incredible aromas of crushed raspberry and blueberry. Full-bodied with firm and chewy tannins and a long finish. Lovely already


Beginning of summer is very hot and dry. August brings milder temperatures. Then september offers great conditions : hot and sunny days with cool nights. This combination allows a slow maturing, grapes turn rich and aromatic. The amazing weather of the end of the season interspersed an exceptionnal vintage.

Harvest : Handpicking from September 21 to October 05, 2005

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16,5/20

La Revue des Vins de France, P. Citerne, Décembre 2015

There is some contrast between its solar nose, smoothly fruity, rich of spicy shades and its palate, still tannic, tight, more austere. This vintage expresses clacissisim, and is ready for long ageing.

Coup de cœur

Figaro Magazine, M. Beaudoin, mai 2013

Beautiful vintage after the brilliant 2005 which is hard to find now. Elegance and still freshness of the fruit, berry and cherry. Deep, rich, intense. Balanced, gourmand with 10 years horizon.

18/20 Coup de cœur

Gault&Millau, N°42- Avril / Mai 2010

Velvety, sensuality, richness, but also freshness. It is very well made, build in the quest of a thoroughbred wine.

94/100

Fine Wine Le Journal, Andréas Larsson,décembre 2009

Floral and delicate nose; elegant notes of wild strawberry. This wine recalls Burgundy. Fresh tannins, red fruits, smoothness. The finish is very long, spicy, silky and even sexy. Already pleasant to taste. This wine is able to age for a long time.

**** - 17/20 - Highly Recommended

Decanter, Volume 34 - N°7 - April 2009

« Nicely concentrated and quite lifled red fruit nose - shows ripeness and character. Fresh, impressive palate of finely tuned vineyard fruit, but already quite forward and on the light side.


AAfter a dry and cold winter, flowering took place early June under good conditions. Beginning of summer was very hot and stormy. Then August followed with cooler temperatures. This September was the hotest and the rainiest one of the last 50 years. These weather conditions allow the berries to get a good  ripeness  ; however a painstacking selection was  required in the vines and on sorting tables.

Harvest : Handpicking from September 21 to October 03, 2006.

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*** recommanded

Decanter , avril 2010

Ripe, crushed black fruits, good purity and depth. Smooth fruit rather dominant oak, but a very attractive wine. From 2010.

92-93/100

Bernard Burtschy, Le Journal du Dimanche, juin 2008

An exceptional range of notes hide its power, balance and finesse.

16-17/20, Grandes Réussites

La Revue du Vin de France, juin 2008 - N°522

Fine and subtle, half body however has a great pedigree, outstanding palate, aerial and seducer wine.

16,5/20

Le Point - Jacques Dupont, mai 2008

Cherry, woody, nice palate, crispy and round tannins, finesse, tight finish, lots of fruits.


After a warm spring, nature was ahead of schedule, which led us to predict a harvest on September 15. Unfortunately, July and August were quite rainy and lost this good advance to the extent. Thanks to excellent work in the vineyard, the vines were perfectly protected from outbreaks of disease, and healthy, ripe grapes were brought in, promising a good 2007 vintage and dispelling fears felt earlier in the growing season.

Harvest : Handpicking from September 25 to October 19, 2007

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18/20

Terre de Vins - Bettane & Desseauve, september/october 2010

Generous wine with a great range of fragrances : black fruits, sweet spices and truffle, from floral to hints of licorice as numerous wines of this vintage. Splendid texture, beautiful finish.

18,5/20

Les 10 vins qui posent une cave, spécial issue l’Express, june 2009, N°3022

Wealthy by its merlots, refreshing thanks to its cabernets, this magnificent wine starts its life with a dreamy structure, an obvious breed and a real complexity. Here the right concentration is reached, with this sensuality which leads to a pheasant and truffles pie within 10 years.

**** 17,5/20

17.5/20, 4****, Decanter, may 2009

Lovely depth of fruit on the palate, velvety in weight and texture. Dense, expressive with balance and length. Plenty of charm. Drink 2015- 2028.

91-93+

The Wine Advocate - Robert Parker, april 2009

A beautiful deep purple color as well as sweet aromas of incense, charcoal, black fruits, and a hint of black truffles are found in this deep, medium to full-bodied 2008. With pure fruit, good acids, and finely grained, ripe, well-integrated tannins, this impressively endowed, yet unevolved offering may compete with La Gaffeliere’s fabulous 2005, and should age for 20-25 years.


After a hot spring season, growth of the vine is fast, and brings to mind havest would take place mid september. However July and Agust were uneven in temperatures, and slow down this trend. September was very sunny and gave a full ripeness to the grapes with a thick skin which is a great protection against pests, and prevent the berries from bursting. On harvest eve, grapes are healthy and ripe and promise a very nice vintage.

Harvest : Handpicking from October 9 to 27, 2008

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95+

The Wine Advocate, Neal Martin, février 2012

An absolutely spectacular effort, the 2009 is one of the all-time great La Gaffelieres produced. One would have to go back to the 2005, 1947 or 1961 to find this level of quality … the 2009 reveals compelling elegance, tremendous intensity and opulence and more viscosity than one normally sees. Lots of kirsch, licorice, incense, truffle, asphalt, blackberry and cassis notes dominate the aromatics and flavors of this full-bodied, viscous, fabulously pure, flamboyant St.-Emilion. Drinking it now may be considered infanticide by some consumers, but it is already attractive, and should last for 3-4 decades.

98/100

Gilbert & Gaillard Wine International, N°2, Septembre 2010

Intense purple-blue. Fresh, extrovert nose of ripe cherry flesh. Admirable harmony on the palate, crunchy, silky, full mouth-feel, substantial fruity length, very charming with total restraint.

**** 18/20

Decanter, mai 2010

Really elegant wine. Suave, finely textured, superb aromatics. Hits an almost perfect pitch. Drink 2018 – 2040.

17 -17,5/20

Bettane & Desseauve, mai 2010

A pure wine, beautiful length, wise with high elegance and finesse. An authentic aristocrat.

92-95/100

Wine Spectator , James Suckling, mars 2010

Racy and beautiful, with blueberry and blackberry aromas and flavors. Solid core of everything. Impressive.


The rainy start to spring threatened a tricky vintage. This was made worse by a hailstorm in the Saint Emilion vineyard on May 12th, which caused great damage and loss of potential crop. Luckily, the vines of Château La Gaffelière escaped damage, and the end of spring brought much kinder weather, which favoured the flowering process. The summer weather was settled and hot (unlike the 2007 and 2008 vintages) and stayed that way until the end of September. As the harvest approached, the crop was healthy and very evenly ripe and soon ready to pick. The 2009 vintage shows great quality and has a huge potential.

Harvest : Handpicking from September 29 to October 9, 2009

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19/20

Gault&Millau, N°59 mars-mai 2013

Amazing silky touch. Tender length, authentic, sharp fruits wrapped up by a beautiful smoothness. Black currant has never been as gorgeous and endless. The finish stretches on floral and mild spices notes.

95+

The Wine Advocate, Neal Martin, février 2013

The 2010's final blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc offers up impressive levels of red, blue and black fruits as well as some toasty oak and crushed rock, giving it minerality. Of course, the acidity in this vintage, with its lower pHs than 2009, provide a freshness and precision that is rare for wines so rich. This wine has plenty of tannin, so give it 4-6 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 25-30 years.
This is a great wine from Comte Leo de Malet Roquefort’s estate, which has been owned by his family since the 1400s. Normally this estate tends to produce a relatively finesse-styled St.-Emilion, and the 2010 still leans in that direction, but it has more fat, muscle and sinew than in most vintages. The choice of Stephane Derenoncourt to manage the vineyard seems to have resulted in much lower yields, and ultimately a wine with much more richness and persistence on the palate.”

18/20

La Revue des Vins de France, Septembre 2013

Expressive nose with a saline and spicy back mouth. This extra quality of tannins and flavors define the palate of a First. However in this category, “La Gaff” is never imposing.

98/100

Gilbert & Gaillard N°5, été 2011

Already singled out for its 2009 vintage, Château la Gaffelière has once again confirmed its rising quality. It is clear that the work of the consultant Stéphane Derenoncourt has started to pay off. The colour is deep with crimson highlights. The nose is pure and exudes red fruit. Warmth on the palate is balanced by freshness, supported by elegant tannic structure. The taste of fruit stays on the palate.

**** 17,5/20

Decanter, mai 2011

Beautifully elegant wine with the extra depth of fruit similar to 2009. Fine, long finish with a cool limestone terroir note. Drink 2018 – 2040


The very cool weather at the end of winter and start of spring caused a delay in bud-break.Early April, damper conditions set in while temperatures rose (to an average of 17°C between April 16 and 30), leading to an even shooting of the vines. Cooler, damper conditions made the flowering process very tricky, causing bad pollination
resulting in severe “coulure” (shot berries) particularly in Merlot plots. Then high temperatures and substantial water deficit in the soils during summertime
helped bring about homogeneous ripening. On the eve of the harvest, the small sized berries had a good phenolic concentration, an aromatic richness, and the vines were perfectly healthy.

Harvest : Handpicking from September 23th to October 18th, 2010.

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95/100

Gilbert & Gaillard, juillet 2012

Deep Crimson. The nose opens up to vanilla notes with red fruit in the background. Fleshy, polished and fruit-forward entry framed by heat. A harmonious, silky wine in a powerful, closely-integrated style. Harmonious across the palate.

17,5

Gault&Millau, juin 2012

Such a nice wine, rich of elegant flavors, the mid-palate fills up slowly with a sensual languor. Powerful and aerial, La Gaffeliere just signed a masterpiece

**** 17/20

Decanter, mai 2012

Fresh and elegant, as is the style. Less opulence than 2009 and 2010 but attractive fruit and plenty of charm and finesse. Chalky terroir evident. Drink 2020-2035.

91-92

James suckling, avril 2012

This is well done with a lovely center palate of blueberries, chocolate, and orange peel. Full and round with polished tannins.”
C’est bien fait avec un milieu de bouche charmant de myrtilles, chocolat et d’écorces d’orange. Ample et rond, avec des tannins fondus.

90-93

, ERobertParker.com, Neal Martin, avril 2012

The 2011 performed slightly differently in multiple tastings, but overall, it appears to be an outstanding, elegant, restrained, somewhat austere, but impressively built wine. The final blend of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc produced nearly 5,000 cases from their 42+ acre vineyard. The wine exhibits lots of earthy, balsam, resiny notes interwoven with red and black currants, cedar and underbrush. This elegant, dense, medium to full-bodied St.-Emilion should drink nicely for 15-20 years


The beginning of winter was cold with periods of snow. However, February and March were warmer, with temperatures over 15°C and light rainfall, bringing about an early start to the vine cycle and earlier than usual bud-break. This weather pattern continued and increased at the beginning of April, resulting in homogeneous and very vigorous vine shooting. From that moment on, the vines had a substantial advance on a normal year and were two weeks ahead of 2010. The flowering was quick, even and with very few shot berries (coulure).This hot, dry weather continued and compounded the problems of water deficit stress in the soils and deficiencies in the vine plant. The heat-wave that occurred on June 26 resulted in sunburnt fruit and vines shutting down. Very luckily, summer turned out to be much more normal with more humid conditions during the ripening phase. As the harvest approached, the grapes displayed good ripeness both in the skins and the tannins.

Harvest : Handpicking from September 9 to 26, 2011

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91+

E-RobertParker.com, Neal Martin, avril 2015

Very elegant Kirsch liqueur-like notes mixed with licorice, spice and earth jump from the glass of this famous St-Emilion, long owned by the Malet Roquefort family. A blend of 80% merlot and 20% cabernet franc, this has slightly more acidity and structure than some St-Emilions. The limestone-dominated terroir comes through in this wine’s striking and very powerful minerality. It is medium-bodied, elegant, tightly knit and probably in need of 2-4 years of bottle age. It should drink well for the following 15 years.

92/100

James Suckling, Février 2015

Crazy nose of red licorice, dark fruits and walnuts. Full body, chewy tannins and a juicy finish. This is a rich and structured wine. Try in 2017.

17-17,5

La Revue des Vins de France, Antoine Gerbelle, Avril Mai 2013

We rarely found such a wine with a digest fruity, ripe and delicate, elegant tannins, licorice and chalky, similar to Ausone’s. This selection is more painstaking than ever, 80% from the southern hillside and confirms the powerful comeback of La Gaffeliere. Price is still affordable.

Coup de cœur 95-97/100

Gilbert&Gaillard, Avril Mai 2013

« Kudos”. Very nice quality of fruit, raspberry, black currant . Rich palate, balanced, gourmand. Freshness coats tannins. Really great success, already expressive and probably long ageing capacity.

93/18. Highly recommended

New Bordeaux, Jane ANSON, Avril Mai 2013

Deep purple-red in colour, looks like extraction is high. Liquorice very strongly on the nose here, gives some precision (there is usually 20% cabernet franc in this wine) like the depth and complexity here, it's soft and enjoyable but has real class. Lovely gently percolating coffee, good cassis fruit but not jammy, not a caricature. A wine to absolutely enjoy the bottle of (shared, of course).
Yes alcohol is clearly high, astringent tannins but not bitter, seems certain to develop well.. Drink 2018-2030.


The end of winter was dry and cold (February) with a substanstial water deficit in the soils. Then spring remained cool but wet (April) disrupting bud-break. Uneven vine shooting was visible on the same stock. Endly temperatures turned milder but heavy rains on early June disturbed the flowering and gave some shot berries (coulures). On July, hot days alternated with lower temperatures wich gave difficulties to the veraison. End of summer was more even, hot and dry on August, September was milder ; its showers intensified the ripeness. As the harvest approached, the grapes displayed good ripeness both in the skins and the tannins.

Harvest : Handpicking from October 4 to16, 2012

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16/20

Bettane & Dessauve (15/04/2014)

Supple and balanced bouquet, it expands with finesse, however a little bit limited.

17/20

Gault & Millau. Pierre Guigui (juin 2014)

Texture is very supple keeping a great freshness, on a precise and juicy fruity. A very beautiful surprise, delicate and floral.

17+

Jancis Robinson (avril 2014)

Drink 2017-2028. Gorgeous fruit character here – surprisingly developed, fleshy and pure. Lovely coffee scent too. Fine
tannic dusting on the finish and a long, impressive finish. Again, it has the signature lightness of 2013, but that needn’t always be a bad thing. The balance is good here, and the flavours are very charming. (Richard Hemming)

93-95

Roger VOSS (01/04/2014)

Barrel Sample. Dry, firm and extracted, this is a tough call at the moment. But once you taste the ripe fruit that’s under the dense structure, you know there will be plenty of good things for the future of this wine.

91-92

James Suckling (03/04/2014)

Pretty texture and density to this. Medium body, seamless and fine tannins and subtle berry and spice character. Very well done for this vintage.


The vintage 2013 was highly complicated, the climatic events mess up the development and the ripening of the grapes.From spring, heavy rains and a lack of heat delayed of 3 weeks the growing cycle of the vine. After flowering, the first report is quite bitter : « coulure and millerandage » shatter and poor fruit set, especially on the elder merlot stocks will reduce the yelds. July is more even (warmer and dryer), however hailstorms caused serious damage in our region. Our estate is luckily untouched. The end of the season is damp, Botrytis cinerea is coming…Harvest lasts 8 days from october 1st. The expertise of our technicians (vines and cellar) allow to to get the most out of our grapes. Our brand new vat room is used for the very first time, and is doing a great job !

Harvest : Handpicking from October 1st to 8, 2013
Painstaking selection in the vines – opticalsorting machine (bought in 2013)

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94-96

GILBERT & GAILLARD (juillet 2015)

Subdued, tightly-knit nose developing lots of finesse after swirling. Substantial potential on the palate, lots of substance and fruit for a robust style with extensive cellaring capacity. The château confirms obvious progress that is particularly noticeable in this vintage

93-94

James Suckling (04/2015)

This is really complex and minerally with so much going on. Full, tight and precise. One of the best ever from here.
All the hard work in reorganizing the vineyard is paying off.

17,5 ( 91)

James LAWTER MW. DECANTER (04/2015)

Derenoncourt consults. Elegant texture and tannins. Stays on the fruit - raspberry, cherry notes. Lively and fresh. Minerality shows. Good, persistent finish. Firm, tannic line at the end. Has staying power. Drink: 2020-2035

17

JANCIS ROBINSON (04/2015)

Blackish crimson. Sweet and spicy with a hint of violets on the nose. On the palate it is so charming that it’s difficult to find the tannins until the very end but this is a really glamorous not-overdone wine. Masses of pleasure and persistence.
Drink 2023-2035

90-93

James MOLESWORTH, WINE SPECTATOR (05/2015)

Features a solid core of dark, ripe plum, fig and blackberry fruit, complemented by lovely minerality through the finish. Delivers some deft toast, letting the fruit and minerality take the lead. Things are on the upswing here.


Spring was nice and warm; it brought homogeneous births of fruits, and let us hope a heavy crop. Unfortunatly weather conditions turned damp : numerous showers through late august made the veraison last longer than usual.Luckily, the first week of september was hot and dry , and so, erased the difference in degrees of ripeness between the berries. The beautiful temperatures of september were salutary, an indian summer after gloomy days. Maturity developped perfectly and the vines remained in good health.
After the first analysis and crush of berries, the dates of harvest appeared to be in normal period.

Harvest : Handpicking from September 22 to October 13, 2014

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96/97

BETTANE & DESSEAUVE

Exceptionnel : Tannin ultra fin, corps vibrant, élégance racée, fraicheur délicate, pureté absolue.

18,5-19

LA RVF, Pierre CITERNE

A hauteur des 30% dans l’assemblage, les jeunes cabernets francs issus des sélections massales du château replantés en coteau, montent formidablement en puissance cette année. Le merlot exprime un fruit radieux, paradoxalement plus floral que celui du cabernet. L’assemblage des deux cépages débouche sur une éclatante réussite alliant au superlatif profondeur de la texture, raffinement de la structure et distinction des arômes.

17,5-18

Le Point

Fruits noirs, soyeux, frais, fin, élégant, juteux, très joli fruit, fin et délicat, long, étiré, sèveux, frais.

94-95

James SUCKLING

A silky and pretty wine with plum and berry aromas and flavors. Full body, refined and silky. Super refined tannins. Goes on for minutes.
Un joli vin soyeux aux arômes de prune et de baie. Riche, raffiné, soyeux. Tannins très affinés. Très belle longueur.

17/20

Bernard BURTSCHY, Le FIGARO

La robe est sombre avec un beau nez de ronce de mûre. Le vin est d'une grande élégance, le milieu de bouche est splendide, le vin d'une grande longueur.3-­‐20ans.
Dark red color, beautiful nose of brambles berry. This wine shows a great elegance, gorgeous half palate, nice and long finish.


2015 is a warm and dry year, and matches perfectly with our clay-limestone terroir.March and April were mild and dry, bringing great conditions for budburst. Flowering was early (23/05), fast and without any problem (few showers, mild temperatures). Limited rainfall produced a gradual water stress specially close to the « veraison » (05/08) boosting the concentration of the grapes. Some showers in August ensured the high quality of the harvest.

Grapes were able to ripe quietly with an ideal end of the season, with no climatic accident over St Emilion. On first day of harvest, merlots and cabernets francs showed high degree of alcohol (14,5 to 15,5% vol.) as usual during dry vintages and nice level of acidity (a pH value around 3,6 on clay-limestone soils / pH value of 3,9 on more sandy soils).

The beautiful temperatures of september were great conditions, an unhoped indian summer after gloomy months…Ripness evolves and the sanitary situation of the vineyard is outstanding.

Harvest lasted 9 days for merlots (28/09-15/10) and 3 days for cabernets francs (8/10-15/10). Bunches were sorted first in the vineyard, then carried in plastic crates of 10kg and stored one night in a cold chamber t7°C. Following the plot by plot management, we were able to choose the tank in relation with the harvested quantity.

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