It’s not often that you are able to watch the rise of a wine from its birth to stardom but this has been the case with Château La Fleur Morange. It’s very first vintage was only in 1999 and now, years later, this little garagiste wine is rubbing shoulders amongst the big boys. Jean Francois’ dream at the outset was to make great wine: “ ‘I had a parcel of old vines at St-Pey d’Armens in St-Emilion and wanted to make a wine of the highest quality that could compete with the best in Bordeaux.” The decade of fine wine that the Julien’s have produced demonstrates the staying power of this tiny garagiste estate.
No estate considered as garagiste had been included in the contentious Saint Emilion Classification until 2012, perhaps because some thought they were cult wines that would have a short life. However Chateau La Fleur Morange proved that it is not only here to stay but that it can outshine their peers . . . it joined the ranks of the Saint Emilion Grand Cru Classe in that auspicious year. A tremendous achievement.
The chateau has caught the eye of the world’s most prestigious wine critics (Robert Parker and Jancis Robinson have both praised this estate) and the 2006 vintage not only won Gold at the Decanter World Wine Awards but also achieved a Coup de Coeur from Hachette. There is only one Coup de Coeur awarded to each appellation and it is the Hachette Guide’s highest honour. ‘Coup de Coeur’ refers to wines the tasters fell in love with at first sip, and wine merchants often find their customers requesting a wine just on the strength alone of this award.