Jean-Luc Thunevin

Jean-Luc Thunevin

Friday, 16 November 2018 15:16

Partout à la fois

Valandraud est présent partout où les dégustations organisées par l'Union des Grands Crus le porte.

Le 16 octobre dernier Camille le présentait à Londres, cette semaine Catherine, Iryna et Caroline sont à Moscou pour la dégustation du 6 novembre, puis Zürich le 7 novembre et Genève le 8, encore avec Catherine.

Ensuite, c'est  Caroline  qui prendra la direction du Japon  avec une présentation à Osaka le 19 et à Tokyo le 20, pour moi ce sera Séoul le 22 et Qing fera un "petit" tour en Chine pour les dégustations de Pékin le 23, Hangzhou le 24, Shanghai le 26, Chengdu le 27 et Guangzhou le 28 !

Monday, 22 October 2018 12:45

Virginie de Valandraud blanc

Always looking for new challenges, decision was made in 2000 to start growing a white vineyard , near Château Valandraud ’s own vineyard.

As a result, please meet a « haute couture » wine, every thing being done to reach our goal : creating a great white wine.

Blending may vary accoring to vintage, after a careful tasting.

The first vintages of this cuvée were sold with the label « Blanc de Valandraud N°2 », now revamped as Virginie de Valandraud blanc.

 

Technical information :

Surface : 4 hectares Solil: clayey limestone

Grape varieties: Sauvignon Gris 10%, Sauvignon Blanc 30%, Semillon 60 %

Age of the vines : plantation in 2000 manual harvest (in 3 episodes with sorting), cold storage

Vinification : 40 % stainless steel tanks and 60% 2 or 3 wines barrels Production: 15 000 bottles

 

Tasting notes :

The 2015 Virginie de Valandraud Blanc is a blend of 50% Sauvignon Blanc, 40% Semillon and 10% Sauvignon Gris. It has a welcoming bouquet of citrus fruit, peach skin and green apples that opens nicely in the glass. The palate is well balanced with bitter lemon and a touch of papaya on the entry, moderate depth and then a tempting peachy finish that will leave you with a smile on your face.

Neal Martin
The Wine Advocate

 

Notes :

Vintage 2011 :
Wine Spectator : 88-91/100

Vintage 2012 :
Wine Spectator : 90/100

Vintage 2013 :
Wine Spectator : 90/100

Vintage 2014 :
Wine Spectator : 89/100

Vintage 2015 :
Wine Advocate :89-91/100

Vintage 2016 :
Wine Advocate : 87-89/100

Saturday, 29 September 2018 18:36

Valandraud Blanc

In 2000, decision was made to strat growing a vineyard with traditionnal Bordeaux white grapes, near Château Valandraud’s own vineyard. New challenge? Here we come !

Debut vintage was 2003, made under the watchful supervision of Murielle Andraud, who is fully in charge of the white cuvées. Averything is thought with one goal in mind : creating the best possible Bordeaux white wine , through a « haute couture »

The first vintages of this cuvée have been sold with another label « Blanc de Valandraud N°1 » before being revamped in Valandraud blanc

Blending may vary according to vintage.

 

Technical information :

Surface : 2 ha
Soil : clayey limestone
Grape varieties : Sauvignon blanc 50 %, Sauvignon gris 15 % , Semillon 35 % Platation in 2000
Vinification : manual harvest (3 episodes wiht sorting), cold storage pressoir Fermentation in barrels and tanks
Ageing « sur lies » 10 to 12 months
Ageing : 70 % new barrels , 30% 1 wine barrels
Production : 3 000 bottles

 

Tasting notes :

The Chateau Valandraud 2016 Blanc is a blend of 50% Sauvignon Gris, 40% Sauvignon Blanc and 10% Sémillon matured in 70% new oak with some larger oak vessels. It was difficult to actually get past some reduction on the nose and discern the fruit profile here. The palate is well balanced with crisp acidity, well integrated new oak, quite tensile with good acidity although I feel that the 2015 last year showed a little more complexity and tension. Still, this is a delicious white Valandraud.

Neal Martin
The Wine Advocate

 

Notes :

Vintage 2010 :
Jancis Robinson : 17/20 Bettane & Desseauve: 18 /20 Wine Spectator :90- 93/100 James Suckling.com : 95/100

Vintage 2011 :
Wine Spectator : 88 -91

Vintage 2012 :
Wine Spectator :90-93

Vintage 2013 :
Wine Spectator : 93/100

Vintage 2014 :
Wine Spectator : 94/100

Vintage 2015 :
Wine Advocate : 91-93/100

Vintage 2016 :
Wine Advocate : 90-92/100 Wine Spectator 89-92/100

Saturday, 29 September 2018 18:33

Valandraud 1er Grand Cru Classé : depuis 2012

In 1989, Jean-Luc Thunevin and Murielle Andraud became the proud owners of a small plot of land of 0,6 ha, in the valley of Saint Emilion, between Pavie Macquin and La Clotte. In 1991 they produced and bottled their first vintage. Since then, their estate portfolio has grown with properties in Saint Christophe des Bardes, Saint Sulpice de Faleyrens or Saint Etienne de Lisse.

In the early days, wine critics nicknamed this production « garage wine », but even as Château Valandraud had not –yet- entered the Saint Emilion classification, it was considered by most wine critics, including Robert Parker, as a major player in Bordeaux.

In 2012, Château Valandraud has been promoted as a 1st classified growth of Saint Emilion.

In 2017, Château Valandraud became a full member of Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux.

 

Technical information :

Surface: 8.88 hectares Soil : clayey limstone

Grape varieties 65 % Merlot, Cabernet Franc 25 %, Cabernet Sauvignon 5%, Malbec 4%, Carmenère 1%

Average age of the vines : 30 ans
Manual harvest, with several sorting andTribaie.technology

Vinification in thermo regulated stainless steel , concrete and wooden tanks , Malolactic fermentation in barrels.

Ageing: 18 to 30 months in new barrels Production: 35 000 bottles
Blending may differ according to vintage

 

Tasting notes :

2015 : The 2015 Chateau Valandraud is founded upon Jean-Luc Thunevin's ever- reliable Merlot parcels, and this year the blend is augmented with 10% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. It has a glorious and damn irresistible bouquet of crème de cassis, blueberry, crushed violets and a scintilla of citrus fruit, all beautifully defined and very precise. In 2015 it is determined to put a gap between itself and the Virginie de Valandraud. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, creamy in texture but not in the slightest cloying. The acidity is well judged with layers of caressing black fruit towards a finish for which I could only deploy the word - nubile. This will be a stunning Valandraud to savor over the next couple of decades, though it will be difficult to resist temptation in its youth.

Neal Martin
The Wine Advocate

 

Notes :

Vintage 2012 :
Wine Advocate: 95+/100 Wine Spectator: 94/100

Vintage 2013:
Wine Advocate : 90/100 Wine Spectator: 91/100

Vintage 2014 :
Wine Advocate 94/100 Wine Spectator : 95/100

Vintage 2015 :
Wine Advocate : 95-97/100 Wine Spectator: 94-97/100

Vintage 2016 :
Wine Advocate : 95-97/100 Wine Spectator : 96-99/100

Saturday, 29 September 2018 18:28

3 de Valandrau

It all started in 1989 when Jean-Luc Thunevin and wife/sidekick Murielle Andraud acquired a small parcel of 0,6 ha in the small valley of Saint Emilion city, between Pavie- Macquin and La Clotte. And in 1991 the adventure of Château Valandraud was launched.

Since then they have bought more vineyards and properties in close by locations such as Saint-Sulpice –de-Faleyrens or Saint-Etienne-de-Lisse. 3 de Valandraud is a genuine introdcution to the delicate work done by our team in Château Valandraud or Clos Badon.

The 3 de Valandraud cuvée is a true Saint Emilion Grand Cru, from our local vineyards and vinified to be enjoyed up to 8 years after the bottling.

 

Technical information :

Surface : 4.5 ha
Soils : clayey limestone, sand and gravels
Grape varieties: 65 % Merlot, Cabernet Franc 30 %, Cabernet Sauvignon et Malbec 5% Vinification in thermoregulated stainless steel tanks
Average age of the vines : 25 years
Ageing 18 mois in new barrels
Average production : 35 000 bouteilles

 

Tasting notes :

The 2015 "3" de Valandraud, the troisième wine of Château Valandraud, has a delineated, precise bouquet with cassis and violets. It is more intense than you would expect, though I am not sure I agree with Jean-Luc that 100% new oak adds anything to the wine. The palate is well defined and cohesive, very smooth, so much so that it could slip down the throat with ease. There is something nonchalant and endearing about this modest wine and it should give easy-drinking pleasure.

Neal Martin
The Wine Advocate

 

Notes :

Millésime 2007

Jancis Robinson: 16.5/20

Millésime 2008
Jancis Robinson : 16/20

Millésime 2009
Wine Spectator : 89/100

Millésime 2010
Wine Spectator : 90/100

Bernard Burtschy: 91/100 Millésime 2011
Wine Spectator : 86-88/100 Millésime 2015

Wine Advocate : 88-90/100

Saturday, 29 September 2018 18:12

Virginie de Valandraud

Born in 1992 as the second wine of Château Valandraud, Virginie de Valandraud is named after Jean–Luc ThunevIn and Murielle Andraud’s daughter.

Since 1997, and the ever increasing Thunevin vineyards in the Saint Emilion area, Virginie de Valandraud has developped its own identity while being grown and vinified the same way and by the same team in charge of Chateau Valandraud.

If Virginie de Valandraud may be seen as a second wine, it’s mainly because of its high quality standards but it has stepped out of its “big brother’s” shadow to rightfully become an independent cuvée.

 

Technical information :

Soil : clayey limestone

Grape varieties :65 % Merlot, Cabernet Franc 25 %, Cabernet Sauvignon 5 %, Malbec 4 % et Carmenère 1%

Average age of the vines: 30 ans
Manual harvest with several sorting including Tribaie technology Vinifications in thermoregulated stainless steel tanks
Ageing : 18 to 24 months in new barrels
Average Production : 50 000 bottles

Blending may vary according to vintage

 

Tasting Notes :

The 2015 Virginie de Valandraud is matured in 100% new oak, according to Jean-Luc Thunevin. It has an intense, quite powerful bouquet with red cherries intermingling with blueberry and candied orange peel. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, a "juicy" Virginie with plenty of puppy fat, but the oak feels nicely integrated and does not obscure its personality on the silky, sensual finish. Perhaps on reflection, I would have liked, say 80% new oak instead of 100%, but why let figures get in the way of this Saint Émilion that should be enjoyed over the next decade.

Neal Martin
The Wine Advocate

 

Notes :

Vintage 2010 :
Wine Advocate 90/100
Wine Spectator : 92/100

Vintage 2011 :
Wine Spectator : 90/100

Vintage 2012 :
Wine Spectator : 89/100

Vintage 2014 :
Wine Advocate : 91/100

Vintage 2015 :
Wine Advocate : 90-92/100 Wine Specator : 89-92/100

Vintage 2016 :
Wine Advocate : 91-93/100

Wednesday, 23 March 2016 11:22

Valandraud Grand Cru : 1991 à 2011

In 1989, Jean-Luc Thunevin and Murielle Andraud became the proud owners of a small plot of land of 0,6 ha, in the valley of Saint Emilion, between Pavie Macquin and La Clotte. In 1991 they produced and bottled their first vintage. Since then, their estate portfolio has grown with properties in Saint Christophe des Bardes, Saint Sulpice de Faleyrens or Saint Etienne de Lisse.

In the early days, wine critics nicknamed their production « garage wine », but even as Château Valandraud had not –yet- entered the Saint Emilion classification, it was considered by most wine critics, including Robert Parker, as playing in Bordeaux major league.

In 2012, Château Valandraud has been promoted as a 1st classified growth of Saint Emilion.

In 2017, Château Valandraud became a full member of Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux.

 

Technical information :

Surface: 8.88 hectares Soil : clayey limstone

Grape varieties 65 % Merlot, Cabernet Franc 25 %, Cabernet Sauvignon 5%, Malbec 4%, Carmenère 1%

Average age of the vines : 30 ans
Manual harvest, several sorting including Tribaie.technology

Vinification in thermo gerulated stainless steel , concrete and wooden tanks , Malolactic fermentation in barrels.

Ageing: 18 to 30 months in new barrels Production: 150 00 bottles
Blending may differ accordin to vintage

 

Tasting notes :

2010 : Tasted blind at the Valandraud vertical at the property, the 2010 Valandraud is a blend of 85% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Franc matured for 22 months in new oak (a little less than subsequent vintages). Initially it felt a little volatile on the nose at first and took time to calm down. This is very heady and raucous, lacking the refinement of the brilliant and superior 2010 Lafleur poured alongside. The palate is very concentrated with blackcurrant pastille and blueberry, veins of cassis emerging towards the finish. Almost viscous in texture, it has immense volume and persistence. It just needs a lot more time to temper its fieriness but that will surely come in time. This is a Valandraud for those with patience.

Neal Martin The
Wine Advocate

 

Notes :

Millésime 2000 :
Wine Advocate 95/100 Bettane et Dessauve: 18/20

Millésime 2003:
Wine Advocate 89+/100

Millésime 2004 :
Wine Advocate 91+/100 Bettane et Dessauve: 18/20

Millésime 2005 :
Wine Advocate 95/100

Millésime 2006 :
Wine Advocate : 91/100

Millésime 2007 :
Wine Advocate :92/100

Millésime 2008 :
Wine Advocate 94/100

Millésime 2009 :
Wine Advocate 95/100

Millésime 2010 :
Wine Advocate 96/100

Millésime 2011 :
Wine Advocate 95/100

History

Château Valandraud

Château Valandraud is the main achievement of a wine obsessed couple, Jean Luc Thunevin and Murielle Andraud. Château Valandraud was born in 1991 on a 0.6 ha vineyard bought with all the couple’s savings.
This small vienyard is situated in the Fongaban valley, in the Pavie Macquin /La Clotte neighbourhood and this is where « Valandraud » comes from : Val ( valley) + Andraud ( Murielle’s family name, which appears on the Saint Emilion’s registery since 1459).

The 8.88 ha estate is now fully based on the clayey-limestone hills and slopes of Saint Etienne de Lisse, with an eclectic array of grape varieties : Merlot 65 %, Cabernet Franc 25%, Cabernet Sauvignon 5%, Malbec 4%, Carmenère 1%.
The harvest is done manually, the grapes being first sorted by the harvest crew directly in the vineyard, they then go through another sorting : a densimetric one through Tribaie® upon their arrival in our cellar.
Stainless steel, wooden and concrete tanks are where the vinification process starts, with pigeage by hand, remontages, during a 3 weeks maceration.
Malolactic fermentation is done in barrels.
Ageing : 18 to 30 months in 100% new oak Blending varies with every vintage, as the result of the careful selection work done by our technical team in order to choose our best lots.
All along this process, there are also many tasting sessions led by Jean Philippe Fort and Michel Rolland.

An assimilated expertise

Excellence is also reached by combining tradition, innovation and respect of the environment. This is the way we have chosen to work for now over 10 years, paving the way to what is now better known as « biocontrol »

A « garagiste » turned First Classified Growth

Once « garagiste »
Now a First classified growth
What’s next ?

Creativity, innovation but let’s not forget knowledge and development.

It’s a matter of balance.

There is no great terroir without the man working on it

Jean-Luc Thunevin

A dream become true.

  • image

    Harvest time.

    The grapes are hand picked at top maturity. The grapes are scrutinized daily in order to launch the harvest when they reach their top maturity. Being hand picked, they go through a direct first sorting in the vineyard. The grapes are collected in small crates and sent to our cellar where they go through a densimetric sorting, before starting the long process of vinification.


  • image

    Ageing in new oak during 18 to 30 months.

    Vintage after vintage, our wine age peacefully in 100 % new barrels, in our temperature controled cellar. It’s then a game of trial and erro when it’s time to think about the bottling : the result of many tastings and possible belndings before the perfect blending is mature enough to be bottled.


  • image

    Château Valandraud.

    Each vintage is the sum of all the dedication and hard work done by a whole team to offer you the best of its abilities. Château Valandraud has thus earned kudos from both professional critics and amateurs. Château Valandraud is regularly acclaimed for its harmonious complexity, its depth and intensity, but also for its display of fruit, its freshness, velvety texture and finesse.


Our team

A team at work

Dozens of employees are working all year long in the vineyard and cellars to create the new vintage. The team in charge of the vineyard’s leading man is Christophe Lardière, our vineyard manager. The team in charge of the vinification’s leading man is Rémi Dalmasso, our in house oenologist and cellar master. Each team has a direct connexion with Murielle Andraud and Jean-Luc Thunevin who oversee the complete work done in both the vineyard and the cellar.

  Our portfolio  

Valandraud

  A unique experience  
 

Let’s keep in touch

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The irrepressible de facto head of the garagiste movement, Jean-Luc Thunevin, along with partner, Murielle Andraud, continue to achieve marvelous things at this estate, always pushing the envelope of quality.

Robert Parker

 

 

Quotes

  • « So, this is the story of how one man and let’s not forget, one woman, changed the face of Bordeaux. It is a story with humble beginnings. »

    Neal Martin.

  • « Valandraud is one of the most interesting stories in Bordeaux. »

    Robert M. Parker, Jr.

  • « Thunevin still challenges the status quo, hoping to open Bordeaux to innovation and risk taking. »

    The Wine Spectator.

Press releases.

 Our latest news 

Valandraud, our blog

 Now and then  

« There is no great terroir without the man working on it ». Jean Luc Thunevin.

  • Partout à la fois
    Partout à la fois

    Valandraud est présent partout où les dégustations organisées par l'Union des Grands Crus le porte.

    Le 16 octobre dernier Camille le présentait à Londres, cette semaine Catherine, Iryna et Caroline sont à Moscou pour la dégustation du 6 novembre, puis Zürich le 7 novembre et Genève le 8, encore avec Catherine.

    Ensuite, c'est  Caroline  qui prendra la direction du Japon  avec une présentation à Osaka le 19 et à Tokyo le 20, pour moi ce sera Séoul le 22 et Qing fera un "petit" tour en Chine pour les dégustations de Pékin le 23, Hangzhou le 24, Shanghai le 26, Chengdu le 27 et Guangzhou le 28 !

  • Comme d'habitude
    Comme d'habitude

    Malgré ce que l’on peut penser en nous regardant prévoir de finir nos vendanges un 18 octobre 2018 (pour nos Merlots et Cabernets francs), il suffit de simplement penser que, tous les ans depuis 1999, nos vendanges commencent dans la plaine vers la Dordogne sur des terroirs précoces et se terminent sur le haut plateau de Saint Etienne de Lisse 3 semaines à 1 mois plus tard. C’est comme ça, pas pour faire « genre », pas pour faire de la « sur - maturité ». Simplement parce que le microclimat est différent, plus tardif et plus froid sur le plateau. Ne pas cueillir ces raisins plus tard, à bonne maturité si les conditions climatiques le permettent, nous amènerait à faire des vins « rustiques », raides, comme c’était souvent le cas avant : ces photos de raisins sont là pour prouver que cette année ces raisins sont tout simplement parfaits. Espérons que dans les chais nous saurons réaliser des vins dignes de ceux récoltés à Bordeaux en 1945 ou 1959.

  • Et c'est parti pour de vrai !
    Et c'est parti pour de vrai !

    On attaque sur tous les fronts ces vendanges 2018 très prometteuses à Saint Emilion.

    Au Château Trimoulet 1er jour pour les jeunes merlots, au Château Le Moulin à Pomerol les vieux merlots ramassés sont superbes, pour les Bordeaux, il y a Bad Boy et Château Compassant, puis ensuite toutes les propriétés avec une météo très favorable.

    Il "suffit" de choisir ce qui est bon à ramasser maintenant. Il y aura juste un stop dimanche avant de grosses journées en perspective pour nos employés permanents et nos saisonniers, heureux de faire ces vendanges à la main, sachant les progrès considérables réalisées par les machines.

  • Etonnant !
    Etonnant !

    Il est de moins en moins facile de parler du millésime en cours, sachant qu’il est compliqué de trouver un nouvel angle. Les vendanges sont toujours un peu les mêmes, les enjeux considérables, le stress au maximum, et les doutes et les certitudes en conflit permanent.

    Au 25 septembre 2018, nous avons nos blancs qui fermentent bien, en qualité et quantité. On verra cela de plus près quand les fermentations seront finies mais, en tout cas, quel bazar dans le chai ! Plus de 30 cuves ou récipients différents pour seulement 4 hectares de vignes blanches !

    Les vendanges des raisins rouges, commencées doucement le 19 septembre par les jeunes vignes, suivies par notre fermage de Libourne, sont déjà très prometteuses. En clair, nos 3ème vins sont du niveau des seconds vins et les nôtres (Clos Badon et Virginie de Valandraud) sont au niveau d’un très grand vin !

    Nous n’avons pas encore commencé les Bad Boy rouge, ni le Domaine Virginie Thunevin ou Château Compassant. Nous démarrons juste aujourd’hui nos Merlots de Pomerol, avec l’objectif, comme l’a écrit ce matin Hervé Bizeul : « il est urgent de ralentir »

    Et oui, étonnant d’être obligé de ralentir..... tant il est vrai pour moi qui aime les vins pleins, riches, concentrés, modernes, qu'il serait dommage de passer à côté d’un 1959, d’un 1947 ou 1982 et de ne réaliser qu’un « vin classique ».

    Je n’ai pas beaucoup d’expérience, mais en goûtant ces raisins déjà superbes (sauf pour ceux des jeunes vignes stressées) à la peau si épaisse, à l’état sanitaire si parfait grâce à ce climat constant et aux pépins presque murs et déjà moins astringents, il me paraît urgent de ne pas se précipiter, surtout si j’en crois les prévisions météo des 10 jours à venir.

  • L'interdit de Valandraud
    L'interdit de Valandraud

    Réalisé une seule fois, en 2000, avec les raisins de la vigne de La Grézolle ( 1.40 ha à Saint Sulpice de Faleyrens -  l’une des 3 parcelles historiques du Château  Valandraud, avec Fongaban et Plaisance), suite à nos essais interdits par l’OAC et l’INAO de pose de bâches plastique anti-pluie d’avant vendanges ( essais qui avaient été acceptés en 1998 et 1999), la production de cette aprcelle fût déclassée d’AOC Saint Emilion Grand Cru en Vin de table de France.

    Le vin réalisé en 2000 est toujours, pour moi, aussi bon, différent bien sûr que notre Château Valandraud 2000 et vendu au même prix voire plus cher que Valandraud,  ce vin fût un grand succès commercial, surtout en Russie en pleine perestroïka.

    En 2016, j’ai voulu voir ce que cette parcelle, totalement replantée en 2010 en Merlot, mais avec une densité plus importante : 8400 pieds au lieu de 6500 pieds/hectare, pouvait donner… sachant que depuis 2001 on y réalise la base de Virginie  de Valandraud, et que cette vigne n’était pas entrée dans le parcellaire du classement de Valandraud en 1er grand cru classé en 2012

    Virginie de Valandraud avec son statut de second vin est de fait un grand cru réalisé sur toutes les parcelles non admises au parcellaire de Valandraud 1er grand cru classé, avec l’objectif d’être un des 10 meilleurs « second vins » de Bordeaux.

    Cet Interdit de Valandraud 2016, a produit  - cette fois en AOC Grand Cru  - 3100 bouteilles ( en 2000 il y avait  eu 4800 bouteilles)

 

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