A classic and elegant red from one of the most imposing châteaux on Bordeaux's right bank, overlooking the Dordogne river. Fronsac was once better known than its neighbour Pomerol, and this is a blend of 84% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Malbec. Xavier Buffo, the MD, was once a vineyard consultant for us in the early days of our time at Bauduc and it's no surprise he's making such good wines from an undervalued appellation. 40% of this wine was aged in new French oak barrels, 60% in one-year old oak.
Top value too. If you were to visit the estate, and no doubt take a tour of the impressive, vast underground cellars, you'd be paying as much for this wine at the cellar door. Drink this 2014 - a classic, slightly cooler vintage - now or over the next 6-8 years. Decant if possible to give it an airing - but not essential. 14% vol.
Do have a quick glance at the small selection of photos below.
- Expert opinion
- Pics at the Chateau
Taken from the Château's website.
Dark crimson. Hint of slightly raw oak on the nose. Then some admirably luscious fruit. Really very subtle with ripe fruit, relatively low-key acid and tannin. Actually, you could almost drink this now! Racy and just the right side of herbaceous. Good freshness. I will give it the benefit of the doubt and hope that it settles down. But the balance is excellent. Long and vigorous. Drink 2017-2025.
Jancis Robinson 16/20
Full of bright red-berry flavors and spiced with the wood aging, this is a generous, fruit-driven wine. The tannins are still softening but already the wine is attractively balanced. Keep this wine for a few more years and drink from 2020.
Roger Voss, The Wine Enthusiast 91/100
Ripe and fresh, with bitter plum and red currant preserve notes carried by lively acidity and fine, chalky tannins. Has a snap of tobacco leaf on the finish. Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. Drink now through 2022
James Molesworth, The Wine Spectator 89/100
The Château de la Rivière 2014 has an elegant, low-key nose at first, but opens with confidence in the glass and offers wild strawberry and red plum scents. The palate is harmonious with well integrated oak, quite refined and delineated with commendable precision on the finish.
Neal Martin, The Wine Advocate 87-89/100