They plow 4 times per year; have 3-4 buds per guyot, and prefer not to do green harvest, if possible. They use a system where each worker is assigned a specific plot in the vineyard for which he/she is responsible – and is paid according to results. Jean-Pierre explained that this is different from some of the team approaches used by other estates – and fosters a strong feeling of commitment in the workers. They are quite large with 107 hectares (5 in white) with 66% cab; 25% merlot and the rest in PV/CF. Average vine age is 35 years with the majority on 3309, 101-13 and ripara rootstock. 50 hectoliters per hectare.
We tasted 3 wines: the 2008 Chateau Talbot, which was a dark ruby with bright fruity nose/palate and velvety tannins. Good concentration, but not too heavy. Elegant, medium++ finish, nice acid. 2005 Constable Talbot – earthy cedar nose with a hint of bret on nose; herbal cherry on palate. Ripe tannins. A good food wine. 2005 Chateau Talbot – medium ruby with purple depths; cedar, coffee and minerality on the nose, with dark fruit on the palate and none of the touches of green we found on the Constable. Very good balance with med++ acid, big tannins, and a powerful finish.