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Bulletin Detail
Date March 9, 2016 
Title 2012 Château Robin – Delicious and Very Well-priced Bordeaux! 
Bulletin Untitled Page

Dear Arthur’s Cellar Wine Club Member:

We’re delighted to offer you Jérôme Caillé’s absolutely delicious 2012 Château Robin, AOC Castillon - Côtes de Bordeaux. Château Robin consistently produces first rate Merlot-based wines and this well regarded vintage is no exception (the ‘Wine Spectator’ rates the 2012 vintage in this part of Bordeaux 90/100). This is a real treat for lovers of high quality Bordeaux and the price ain’t too shabby either.

Château Robin

Yours truly and Jérôme Caillé 
Château Robin is quite an old estate that was mentioned in the third edition of the Guide Féret in 1874. It was purchased in 2003 by Jérôme’s parents, Laurence and Jean Caillé. Here’s how that came to be as related by Jérôme when he stayed with us a few years ago. He was visiting an old school chum whose parents owned the property. They were having lunch when the friend’s father came into the room looking as if he had just seen a ghost. He had always sold all of his Château Robin through a négociant (wine merchant) in Bordeaux. Evidently the father was a grouchy old curmudgeon who was nasty to friend and foe alike. Well, it seems he behaved wretchedly to his négociant one time too often and as the result the négociant decreed that their business relationship was over. This was a disaster for the friend’s father because he had no other way to get his wine to market. It was at this moment he decided to sell everything. Jérôme, ever the opportunist, thought to himself, ‘I would love to live here and run Château Robin. I am confident that I could find customers for this lovely wine.’ So, he called his father Jean, a successful businessman in La Réunion, and the rest as they say is history.    

The property the Caillés acquired consists of twelve and a half hectares under production in Castillon - Côtes de Bordeaux appellation, right beside St-Emilion and Pomerol in the fabled Bordeaux region of France. Jérôme’s easy-drinking, delicious wines have been awarded many gold medals and have received numerous glowing citations from the wine press.

Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux

Robert M. Parker, Jr. has this to say about the Côtes de Castillon (now renamed Castillon - Côtes de Bordeaux) in the fourth edition of his book ‘Bordeaux’ – “Now the  most fashionable of the satellite appellations (of Bordeaux), the Côtes de Castillon is a hotbed of activity as well as a fertile breeding ground for a bevy of overachievers. Located east of Puisseguin-St-Emilion approximately 25 miles from (the city of) Bordeaux, the appellation is named after the commune called Castillon-La-Bataille, which commemorates the Battle of Castillon. This 1453 battle marked the conclusion of the Hundred Years’ War when the English Commander, Talbot, died during the defeat of his army. As one of the older wine making regions in the area, viticultural practices can be traced to Roman times. Appellation status was awarded in 1955 and there has been significantly more interest expressed in the wines as an alternative to the wines of St-Emilion.”

In fact, when he was here hosting some wine dinners, Jérôme had his guests compare Château Robin with a Grand Cru St-Emilion of the same vintage costing four times as much. The guests unanimously preferred the Château Robin!

The bucolic vineyards of Château Robin

The 2012 Château Robin – 14.0% Alc./Vol. $28/$174 per 6 bottle case
$27/$348 per 12 bottle case

The 2012 Château Robin comes in regular 750 ml bottles in either six or twelve bottle cases. We will be taking your orders to the LCBO on Wednesday, March 23rd.

James Molesworth of the ‘Wine Spectator’ has this to say about the 2012 vintage. “The right bank has the right stuff. The Merlot-based wines of Bordeaux's Right Bank appellations, namely Pomerol and St.-Emilion, met greater success in the 2012 vintage than their Cabernet-based counterparts from the Left Bank.”

This lovely, elegant and round wine is made from 60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. The grapes were hand-picked, hand-sorted and destemmed and came from vines with an average age of over 45 years. The yield was only twenty hectolitres per hectare! Half of the juice aged in concrete tanks while the remainder spent a year in one to five year old oak barrels. The barrels were 90% French and the rest American.

It is a dark purple with violet glints and a black centre. The nose offers up fresh, lively aromas of red fruit (cherries, raspberries and plums), spices, vanilla and damp earth. It is medium to full-bodied, well-balanced with soft tannins and clean acidity. It is drinking quite nicely now but I would wait a couple of years before my initial assault. It will keep quite happily for at least ten year, likely more.  This is really very good Merlot-based Bordeaux at a most reasonable price. Try some for yourself.

Order - six bottles to the case
Order - twelve bottles to the case.

The LCBO is the only entity authorized to sell beverage alcohol in Ontario. Arthur Sellers & Company and Arthur’s Cellar Wine Club do not sell or markup beverage alcohol, but rather, arrange for customers to purchase it from the LCBO. Our prices indicated above and on our website include the LCBO sale price plus a fee to cover the cost of sourcing, handling and marketing the wine. The LCBO’s sale prices are available on request.

Know any lovers of superb, very well priced Bordeaux? If so, we would greatly appreciate it if you would pass this bulletin on to them.

Many thanks and cheers!

Jim, Hélène and Kate