Price:  £35.95 | Case Rate: £34.16
Ex Tax: £29.96

Chateau Cantemerle - Cantemerle 2012


  • Country: France
  • Wine Region: Bordeaux
  • Wine Area: Haut-Medoc
  • Wine Maker: Pascal Berteau
  • Grape: Bordeaux Blend
  • Grape Percentage: 55% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Petit Verdot and 7% Cabernet Franc.
  • Unit Quantity (ml): 750
Duty/Vat Paid
WA: 89 to 91 (2013) VS: 87 (2008) JR: 16 (2008) WS: 87 (2008) WE: 91 (2008) NM: 88 (2008)

Wine tasting notes

This unique soil and microclimat are reflected in the wine's personality. Cantemerle has a brilliant colour, a powerful bouquet, and a soft, lively flavour. It is rare to find such refined fruitiness. This great wine can be enjoyed young, when it is charming, fruity, and marked by a vanilla taste which comes from well-integrated oak. This makes Cantemerle an ideal choice for the modern wine drinker who likes fresh tannins. However, it can also age extremely well. Fine, old vintages have impeccable class, with incomparable flavours of sheer elegance. Cantemerle therefore belongs to that rare category of the world's wines which can not only age, but also improve over several decades.

Expert Reviews

Wine Advocate/Robert Parker (2013)89 to 91 pts

Wine Advocate # 206. Apr 2013. Reviewer : Robert M Parker Jr Cantemerle’s ethereal elegance and racy, classy style are unmistakable in this understated yet pretty, dark ruby-colored 2012. Offering lots of cherry, raspberry and black currant fruit, this is a wine of unmistakable finesse and delicacy. Enjoy it over the next 10-12 years.

Vinous/Antonio Galloni (2008)87 pts

July 2011 - Bright red-ruby. Currant, musky oak and smoky minerality on the nose. A juicy, rather understated midweight, with harmonious acidity framing the cool flavors of currant and fresh herbs. On the light side. Sweet tannins are in balance with the wine's fruit, but I marked this wine down for a slight green edge. -- Stephen Tanzer (2008)16 pts

Tasted May 2009 - Crimson. Hint of rawness on the nose but lovely round silky texture on the palate. Pretty dry tannins but very fine ones. Muscular. Well done. When to Drink : 2013 to 2019.

Wine Spectator (2008)87 pts

March 2011 - Smoky, toasty notes frame black cherry, tar and licorice flavors in this solid, lively red, with fresh acidity, firm tannins and a smoky finish. Nicely polished.

Wine Enthusiast (2008)91 pts

90-92 Barrel sample. Fruity, attractively balanced wine, the spice and caramel wood flavors fitting well into the sweet, berry fruits.

Neal Martin (2008)88 pts

Tasted at the UGC 2008 tasting in London. This has a light, smoky, sous-bois nose with moderate definition, but needing more fruit intensity. A saline accent develops with time. The palate is medium-bodied with chewy tannins, sappy core of black fruits with good depth on the finish. The palate is far better than the aromatics at the moment, so hopefully this will improve. Drink 2011-2022. Tasted October 2010.

Vinification Notes

Fermentations and macérations : 28 to 30 days. Type of vats : Wooden conical frustum vats. These allow intense, passive maceration of the cap of grape solids in the juice. Running off and pressing : Décuvage sélectif par strate. Selective devatting by layer. Selective devatting by layer is a Château Cantemerle innovation. After the running off, the top of the cap (dry and oxidated skins) and the bottom (pips, sediments mixed with the marc) are removed. Only the heart of the cap, that contains the best phenolic compounds, is pressed. Ageing : 16 months - 12 months in French oak casks (50% new oak) 4 months in vat after blending. The wine ages lot by lot for 12 months in French oak barrels (medium toast). Then the final blend rests in vats for another 4 months. An ultra-light fining is done during that period of time but no filtration occurs prior to bottling.