Chateau du Breuil is made by the Vialard family in Cissac and sits on prestigious terroir over-looked on one side by First Growth Chateau Lafite Rothschild (AOC Pauillac) and on the other by Second Growth Chateau Cos d’Estournel (AOC Saint Estephe). The Vialard family have been closely linked to the Haut Medoc since 1793 as winemakers for the First Growths Latour and Lafite. This is not their only connection to the premier chateaux; it was the Vialards who sold Fifth Growth Chateau Clerc Milon and Cru Bourgeois Anseillan to two branches of the Rothschilds in the 1940s from their estate.
The Cru Bourgeois classification dates back to the 1860s and covers some impressive names. Given as a mark of quality; today the rank of Cru Bourgeois offers some seriously good wines. As a rule of thumb Cru Bourgeois sits above the rank of Bordeaux Superieur and just below that of a Grand Cru Classe. It is awarded to the vintage and not to the chateau which means that each year a chateau can lose or gain Cru Bourgeois status depending on whether the wine of that vintage makes the grade or not.
Du Breuil is an 6th century fortress and is one of the oldest properties in the Medoc. It sits adjacent to the Vialard’s other property Chateau Cissac. Now an imposing ruin it was once owned by the King of England and has many legends attached to it. One concerns the ghost of the 10th century wife of Arnaud Chevalier of Spain, La Dame Douce (the Sweet Lady) who wanders down a secret tunnel to the church from the fortress.
The esate is now run by the fifth generation of Vialards, Danielle and her daughter,Marie, and is producing beautifully crafted clarets. In keeping with Medoc tradition, the vineyards are mainly planted with their traditional variety, Cabernet Sauvignon. This variety is ideally suited to the type of terroir in Cissac, where its strength and aromas can realise their full potential. Blended with elegant Merlots and spicy Petit Verdots, Cabernet Sauvignon produces wines that are particularly complex and expressive. Du Breuil is sublime with beef and steak including chateaubriand, beef wellington and rich casseroles such as daube of beef or oxtail. It also pairs exceptionally well with venison, pigeon and duck, truffles, hard cheeses, liver and kidneys.