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Barrel Aging

Barrel Aging

The aging of wine in oak barrels is a Bordeaux tradition passed down from generation to generation since the 14th century.

Its main interest lies in two points :

1- During aging, the wine concentrates and consequently intensifies the fruity aromas and length on the palate. It is said that the barrel "drinks" the wine.
(Regular topping up is necessary to keep the barrel always full without contact with air; otherwise, the wine would turn into vinegar.)
This constant addition of wine corresponds throughout the aging process to approximately a quarter of the barrel's capacity.

2- The tannins from the wood blend with those of the wine, adding extra complexity.


The choice of wood is an essential aspect to achieve the desired result.

The higher the toasting of the barrel during its manufacture, the more dominant the woody aromas will be, with notes of oak and toast or even tar, masking the fruitiness of the grapes.

For our barrels, we therefore choose a low to medium toasting so that the wine's fruit dominates the tasting. In this type of aging, we primarily seek an additional contribution of smoothness, vanilla and spicy aromas, and persistence on the palate in harmony with the initial fruity notes.

In addition to toasting, not all barrels have the same quality of wood.

The denser and tighter the wood rings, the higher the quality of the barrel.

We order barrels with a number of rings ranging from 7 to 10 per centimeter and verify upon receipt that the staves of each one meet our selection criteria.

This number allows the wood to possess subtle and refined tannins. (Of course, the higher the quality of the barrel, the more expensive it is! Unfortunately...)


...Finally, if the wood is of quality, we are confident that the cooper will take care of it and respect a natural drying time of two years in the open air rather than a faster artificial drying that accentuates the bitterness of its tannins.

This quality of wood is exclusively produced in carefully managed oak forests, such as in the mythical forests of Allier in France.

Vintage 2021 & 2022 - New Press Ratings

Château Fougas Maldoror 2022

« Biodynamic cultivation for Fougas Maldoror. A lot of finesse and freshness in the bouquet of Fougas Maldoror. Inviting fruity and spicy notes complemented by mineral notes. The wine is creamy, silky and carried by compact tannins with very fine grains. We feel the calcareous freshness through chalky notes and energizing salinity! A brilliant wine to discover at all costs.
2027-2040 »

FR « Culture biodynamique pour Fougas Maldoror. Beaucoup de finesse et de fraîcheur dans le bouquet de Fougas Maldoror. Invitantes notes fruitées et épicées complétées par des notes minérales. Le vin est crémeux, soyeux et porté par des tannins compacts aux grains très fins. On ressent bien la fraîcheur calcaire au travers de notes crayeuses et d'une salinité énergisante ! Un vin brillant à découvrir à tout prix.
Potentiel 2027-2040. »

Note: 93-94/100
Tasting 07.04.2023 by Yves Beck

Château Fougas Maldoror 2021

The freshness of the Cabernet is undeniable, I would even say perhaps a bit too emphasized. Nevertheless, a bit of air changes the game. In the mouth, the wine displays a surprising density, even roundness while having granular tannins that tighten the finish a bit. I have the impression that this wine is still searching a bit, and at the same time, it seems to be on the right path. Patience is required! I am leaning towards a potential.


FR " La fraîcheur du Cabernet n'est pas à démontrer, je dirais même peut-être trop souligné. Néanmoins un peu d'air change la donne. En bouche le vin affiche une surprenante densité, même de la rondeur tout en disposant de tannins granuleux qui serrent un peu la finale. J'ai l'impression que ce vin se cherche encore un peu et, parallèlement, il me semble suivre la bonne voie. La patience est de mise ! Je reste sur une note potentielle. "

Note 90-92/100
Tasting by Yves Beck (Bordeaux 2021 Livrables)

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