Saint-Estèphe is the northernmost of the Medoc appellations.
Its famous vineyards run seven kilometres along the Gironde Estuary.
This “rivière” is the cradle of the great wines of the Médoc.
A mild and temperate climate offers ideal conditions for winegrowing, protecting vines in the winter and offering cooler temperatures and breezes in the summer. A steady temperature range promotes the ripening of the grapes. Surrounded by the classified Great Growths of the appellation, Laffitte Carcasset vineyards benefit from the influence of this river.
Gravel and clay
The Saint-Estèphe terroir is made up of gravelly rises emblematic of the Left Bank of the Garonne River. These gravelly islets, or “terraces”, resulting from sedimentation during the Quaternary period, are composed of small river stones. Offering natural drainage, this gravel is mixed with traces of ironpan, clay-limestone and sand in places, forming the unique soil patchwork of the Laffitte Carcasset vineyards.
Another feature of the appellation is the presence of marine limestone known as “Saint-Estèphe marl” and deep clay layers that increase the resistance of vines to water stress during periods of severe drought.
On some of the rocks are timeless raindrops. Norman Maclean, author
Wines produced at Château Laffitte Carcasset are a blend of three traditional grape varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc.
Cabernet Sauvignon, the most famous Left Bank variety, predominates (60%). With its excellent ageing potential, it brings power, structure and finesse to the wine. Merlot grapes (30%) are round, smooth and even more full-bodied.
Cabernet Franc (5%) is paler and less tannic than Cabernet Sauvignon, adding finesse and complexity to the final blend. It also has good ageing potential.
In 2020, a new grape variety was added to the estate’s vineyard: planting Chardonnay in limestone soils marked a minor revolution in the Saint-Estèphe region. The first white cuvée will be available from the 2023 vintage onwards.