A magnificent vineyard, a prestigious château, a timeless motto, and a selection of elegant wines made in the image of the Médoc’s finest. Precise, sustainable winegrowing and winemaking, under the timeless gaze of mythological statues. A place that embodies an eternal spirit, the French way of life.
Here, in the space that divides the land and the estuary, two mythological creatures have made their home. Beyond the porch, the sense of place is palpable. Grandeur, magnificence and splendour are the hallmarks of Château Barreyres. Two majestic female sphynxes watch over the château, its cathedral-like winery and luscious park, bathing in light and looking out upon a tree lined pathway. Swans serenely gliding on the surface of the large pond add a sense of calm to the overall impression. In eternal ambiance, the sphynxes guard the spirit and quintessence of Château Barreyres’ wines.
The property’s famed motto, « ni vanité, ni faiblesse », is worn like a badge of honour, a symbol of all that characterises the history of Château Barreyres, passed down from owner to owner. A history inaugurated by Timothée du Périer de Larsan, son of Jean-Baptiste du Périer de Larsan, erstwhile President of the Comité viticole de la Gironde and grand sénéchal of Guyenne, and taken up by the property’s current owner, Pierre Castel, when he acquired the château in 1971. With patience and determination, he set about establishing a 101 hectare vineyard. He still enjoys strolling through the Barreyres vines as the sun rises, piercing though the morning mist, immersed in the timeless spectacle.
As a mark of respect for the varied terroirs present at Château Barreyres, the team has taken a plot by plot approach to winemaking. Despite its surface area, each plot is treated differently in accordance with its growth. From the Arcins croup, the vines extend around the château on soils and subsoils of clay and sandy gravel. On soils composed largely of Pyrenean gravel thrives the Cabernet Sauvignon that constitutes 55% of the vineyard. Below, clay soils provide the perfect conditions for Merlot, which makes up 45% of the vineyard.
An approach based on understanding the terroir, bringing together nature and sustainable winegrowing. Château Barreyres benefits from slightly shallower root depth than its neighbours, resembling more closely the nearby Margaux vineyard. With roots worthy of the region’s finest properties, at Château Barreyres each plot of vines is unique.
Château Barreyres stands proudly in the very heart of the prestigious Haut-Médoc appellation, benefitting from a planting density of 9 600 vines per hectare, aged on average 30 years, and a topography that offers excellent natural drainage. Gravel soils with large, gleaming pebbles reflect the sun’s rays back up onto the grapes, helping them to ripen, to become the essence of the Haut-Médoc in all its elegance.
A culture of precision demands a sustainable winemaking approach, based on respect for nature and close surveillance of the vines. At Château Barreyres, the team works daily to protect the local flora and fauna. Certified Terra Vitis since the 2018 vintage, this environmentally-conscious approach is founded on the principles of sustainable agriculture, taking into account the natural surroundings, the vines, the men and women who work at the property, and the wines that are produced. Through methods that heavily limit interventions, Terra Vitis aims to maintain a living, fertile soil.
As harvest approaches, a rigorous selection and tasting process determines the optimal level of maturity for each plot of vines. In the vat-house, the harvest is meticulously sorted. Sleek, modern stainless steel vats bring out the elegance of the terroir. The maceration temperature is reduced to prevent bitterness, before the harvest is transferred to 14 wooden vats. The final stage of the winemaking process is the aging, carried out in 1,600 barrels, supplied by 5 of the region’s finest coopers and bathing in the light of the cellar’s stain glass windows, crafted by master glassmaker Raymond Mirande.
The estate is a reference point in the Haut-Médoc appellation. Château Barreyres is reputed for the remarkable elegance and finesse of its wines, made in the image of the Médoc’s finest. Crafted with the utmost precision, in the vineyard and in the winery, the vines of Château Barreyres display elegance, force and finesse.
An intense, almost glassy darkness immerses the taster in a moment of reflection. The nose, with its deep fruit aromas, imposes its will through force of persuasion. Smooth aromas of peony, vanilla and Autumn spices are balanced by notes of redcurrant. On the palette, this Haut-Médoc Cru Bourgeois is at once powerful, silky and lively. The finish is long and balanced, with pleasant oak offering notes of tobacco and promising remarkable aging potential.
The property’s second label is an homage to the sphynxes that have watched over the Château Barreyres since 1833. The legend of these mysterious, graceful creatures is reflected in the sensuous luxury of La Griffe de Barreyres. An intense carmine colour. A nose dominated by dark fruit notes offers pleasant, fruity complexity, with subtle notes of cocoa. On the palette, the wine offers fine, velvety tannins and a full body. Overall, La Griffe de Barreyres reveals characteristic balance, maintaining its power.
Precision winemaking and barrel-aging provide elegant tannins and excellent balance, enabling Château Barreyres to stand up to dry-aged steaks. It is also perfect with salt-baked lamb, or rustic roast pigeon with Armagnac jus. The sensuous luxury of La Griffe de Barreyres pairs perfectly with artisanal charcuterie, duck terrine with hazelnuts, and sautéed porcini mushrooms with fresh herbs.