In the old days, some of the grand houses in Sauternes used to make a Bordeaux Blanc Sec for themselves and some of their friends, because all the interest was in the Sauternes and the Noble Rot that they successfully nurtured. Sauvignon Blanc has been discovered the world over for its refreshing taste. The combination of Sauvignon Blanc with Semillon for ages was just a Graves and Sauternes “secret” and now it is going great guns in parts of Australia as well. Bordeaux Blanc Sec used to be a hodgepodge of varietals in Graves and in other parts of Bordeaux that bottles white wines in a dominate red wine region. Sauternes historically used Semillon and especially the Noble Rot grapes and tempered the juice with Sauvignon Blanc, whereas the Bordeaux Blanc Sec is predominately the acidic Sauvignon Blanc and tempered with the addition of the palate pleasing Semillon.
Chateau Guiraud is classified as a Premier Cru in the 1855 Classification of Sauternes and Barsac. It was originally known as the Noble House of Bayle, but it was bought by Pierre Guiraud in 1766 and passed through many generations of the family until it was bought by a group of French winemakers in 2006. The Chateau has two-hundred-ten-acres, of which the majority of the land is planted with Semillon and the balance is Sauvignon Blanc. Along with the famed Chateau Guiraud, their second wine label is Petit Guiraud which is made from younger vines. They also produce Le Dauphine de Guiraud (Sauternes) and Chateau Guiraud Pavillon Rouge (Bordeaux). Then there is Le G de Chateau Guiraud their Bordeaux Blanc Sec or Dry White Bordeaux wine. Over the years the winery has been rather independent even in their labels, what started out very Napoleonic in Black and Gold, like many of the other houses, ended up continuing with the colors, but softening the look with simple Helvetic font, instead of floral scripts. They were also rather innovative by opening up a Bistro La Chapelle in the most sacred part of the estate in the chapel.
While most Bordeaux Blanc Sec wines are predominately Sauvignon Blanc, Le G de Chateau Guiraud is fifty/fifty. The fruit is manually harvested using small baskets and fermentation is for about three weeks. Eighty percent of the wine is aged in the barrels from the last vintage of Chateau Guiraud and twenty percent is done in Stainless Steel. The average aging in the barrels is seven months with regular stirring of the lees. This is a very lush and full-bodied white wine with a delicate gold tinge, a very refreshing wine that leaves one chewing the wine to appreciate the suppleness of the fruit and the terroir that lingers and beckons for another taste. It most assuredly passed the Bride’s test for desirability and it comes in a handy easy to carry six pack.