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Bordeaux producer Château Chasse-Spleen purchases Château Brillette

Château Chasse-Spleen has cemented its status as the leading producer in the Moulis-en-Médoc appellation by purchasing the neighbouring Château Brillette vineyard.

The acquisition includes a 35ha plot of fine gravel soils, predominantly planted with Cabernet Sauvignon, and the Merlaut family, which owns Château Chasse-Spleen, said the purchase will help the team create wines of greater depth and structure.

Château Chasse-Spleen was chosen as one of six Crus Exceptionnels in the Cru Bourgeois classification of 1932, and it is widely considered to be of cru classé standard.

Entrepreneur Jacques Merlaut acquired the property in 1976, and it expanded its footprint by purchasing the terroirs of Gressier Grand Poujeaux in 2003.

The Merlaut family has worked side-by-side with the Flageul family, which owns Château Brillette, since the 1970s.

The Flageul family decided to sell up in order to focus on other activities, so patriarch Jean-Louis Flageul approached Céline Villars-Foubet and her husband Jean-Pierre Foubet – the third generation of the Merlaut family – to discuss the sale.

Château Chasse-Spleen. Credit: Union Grands Crus Bordeaux

With the addition of the Château Brillette vineyard, Chasse-Spleen now owns all four gravel ridges on the western fringe of the appellation, which give Moulis its identity.

Villars said: ‘We are very proud to have been chosen by our friends, the Flageul family, to continue to give life to this great terroir.

‘The Brillette terroir, which has always been known for the quality of its gravel, could no longer elude us. This acquisition optimises our range of soil types which will give even more depth to our wines.’

Oenologist Eric Boissenot, who previously worked at Brillette and continues to work at Chasse-Spleen, will be entrusted with the blending.

‘I know both terroirs well, having advised Brillette and Chasse-Spleen for a long time,’ he said. ‘The merger of the two vineyards will certainly bring an even more Médoc-like aspect to the Chasse-Spleen blend, with the increased proportion of Cabernet Sauvignon on deep gravel.’

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