Perched on the limestone heights of Saint-Emilion, within 200 metres of the town’s ancient walls and moat, this little-known jewel of a property produces a wine which defines Saint-Emilion at its best. There are less than 16 acres in production, the vines averaging about 35 years of age. In 2016 the blend reflects how the vineyard is planted: 80% Merlot with 20% Cabernet Franc. Owner Luc d’Arfeuille has stuck to his guns, determined to make another classically balanced wine – in which he has completely succeeded. “I aim to produce wines which will give pleasure, which everyone will enjoy to drink.” There is no over-extraction here, no delayed harvesting to achieve over-ripeness, and only a judicious replacement of 40% of the barrels each year.
2016 La Serre is purple-ruby of medium depth, the nose showing fresh, bright, open aromas. In the mouth, there is immediate, bouncing fruitiness, with mid-palate of classic proportions, creamily-textured tannins and lovely, fresh length. Here is an impeccably-balanced wine, highly recommended for mid-term ageing (for drinking 2020-2032+).