A Second Growth from Margaux, Brane has been regarded as one of the top Bordeaux estates for centuries, writes Reva K Singh. Known originally as Château de Gorce, after the family who founded it in the 18th century, this great wine estate was producing excellent wines from the Médoc region of Bordeaux long before the 1855 classification. On June 3rd an exclusive vertical tasting of Brane-Cantenac wines from 2000 to 2007 will be held at The Oberoi, New Delhi. Leading the tasting will be the Château owner, Mr Henri Lurton. The tasting is organized by Brindco and Sommelier India with support from The Oberoi Group.
In 1833 the estate’s reputation prompted the Baron of Brane, who was a viticulturalist and recognised the quality of its terroir, to buy Château de Gorce after selling his own estate, Brane-Mouton (now Mouton-Rothschild). In 1838, he renamed Gorce, Brane-Cantenac.
Ranked at the top of the Second Growths, Brane is often referred to as the “First of the Seconds”. Indeed, before the First World War in 1914, its wine fetched the same prices as the first growths.
Reticent to the point of being shy, the owner of this august estate will soon be in India. Henri Lurton is a hands-on wine producer with degrees in oenology and experience of working vineyards in South Africa, Australia, and Chile. Lurton inherited Château Brane-Cantenac from his father and has built further on its pedigree. He carried out substantial work to improve the vineyard and invested in state-of-the-art winery equipment.
I met Henri last March when he showed us around and described his estate’s outstanding terroir and the new techniques he had adopted to further improve the wines of Château Brane-Cantenac, taking them to the highest possible level of quality. His aim is to produce each year the best wine possible while remaining faithful to the outstanding, historic terroir of Brane.
During his India visit in June, we will have the rare privilege of being guided through a vertical tasting of Brane-Cantenac wines from 2000 to 2007 by the owner himself – wines that are a true reflection of the excellent quality of grapes produced in the vineyard in every vintage.
Henri Lurton’s philosophy at Brane is to produce wine from what the soil can offer and enhance the grapes’ natural balance, incorporating finesse, elegance and subtlety.