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Rolland, Derenoncourt take on Chateau Beauséjour Duffau-Lagarrosse

Chateau Beauséjour Duffau-Lagarrosse is to get a makeover with Bordeaux’s top consultants in charge.

Nicolas Thienpont, Michel Rolland and Stephan Derenoncourt will direct winemaking at the 5.1ha Saint Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classé.

Nicolas Thienpont, director of winemaking at Chateau Pavie Macquin and Larcis Ducasse will be in overall charge, assisted by consultants Rolland and Derenoncourt.

According to La Revue de Vin de France, the change in direction will help ‘realise the terroir’s potential’ which has been ‘endormi’ [asleep].

Thienpont told decanter.com, ‘We have to be modest, we are not here to criticise what has been done before, but we will use methods that have worked at both Pavie Macquin and at Larcis Ducasse.’

Examples of change include the installation of pigeage tools (punching down) in open fermentation vats, and to ferment the grapes entirely – no crushing – as is practiced at Pavie Macquin and Larcis Ducasse.

‘It is a controversial method, but it will result in a better definition of extraction,’ Thienpont said.

The new open vats will be used for the 2009 vintage, he said. He also stressed ripeness and harvest dates, but would not say if he will pick later than in previous years.

Thienpont also stressed, ‘The estate is definitely not for sale. It will stay in the hands of the Duffau-Lagarrosse family.’

Thienpont will assume full control by the end of the year. Rolland has already worked with the estate but in a more limited consultative role.

Written by Panos Kakaviatos

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