Château Saint Pierre
Classification: Fourth Growth (4ème Cru)
Château Saint Pierre lies opposite its sister Château Gloria just outside the town of Beychevelle. The château is one of the most ancient in Médoc and early records in 1693 show a wine growing property called Serançan belonging at the time to the Marquis de Cheverry. During the reign of Louis XV, Baron de Saint Pierre bought the estate, gave it his name and kept it until his death.
Château Saint Pierre was bought in 1982 by Henri Martin who also owned Château Gloria. Martin was born at Château Gruaud Larose in 1903 and came from a family of coopers who had been barrel making for the châteaux of Bordeaux for more than 3 centuries. Gloria was created in 1942 when Martin bought 14 acres of vines in Saint Julien, taking its name from the land on which the Martin family home was built. Martin became Mayor of Saint Julien, President of the Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins de Bordeaux, co-founded the Commanderie de Bordeaux and is responsible for reviving the ancient fame of the village.
Martin didn't stop at Château Gloria, his tireless quest to own a classed growth estate was realised when he bought Château Saint Pierre at the grand age of 78. Château Saint Pierre is the very reverse of Château Gloria – its as old as Gloria is young. However the quality of the wines is the one thing they have in common. Martin breathed new life into the ancient Saint Pierre and renovated the château and the winery and rejuvenated the vineyards. Henri Martin died in 1991 and the Châteaux are now owned by his daughter Françoise and husband Jean-Louis Triaud who continue to improve the wines.
The vines stretch over 42 acres and it is one of the smallest vineyards in Saint Julien – if not the smallest. Martin sold some of the land to Châteaux Ducru Beaucaillou and Gruard Larose and kept the old vines to make his wine – the average age of the vines is over 50 years old. The grapes grown are 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc. The soils are typical Garonne gravels, clay and sand.
The wines of Château Saint Pierre are fuller bodied than others from the appellation, fruity and smooth. They have smoky flavours of blackberries, ground coffee, toast, toffee, violets and oak. They are well balanced with firm tannins and good acidity. The wines age well and are also approachable when young.
Owner: Françoise & Jean-Louis Triaud
Château Website: www.domaines-henri-martin.com
Oenologist: J Boissenot