, in French and English.
Exerpt from a write up at the Mad Rose Group
, which represents the US importer, Rosenthal Wine Group:
: "There is the appellation of Bandol with its plethora of producers, some good, some mediocre; and then there is Chateau Pradeaux, the unique, inimitable, standard bearer for this ancient wine-growing district. The Chateau Pradeaux is situated on the outskirts of the town of St. Cyr Sur Mer which lies directly on the Mediterranean Ocean between Toulon and Marseilles. The estate is owned by the Portalis family which has owned this property since before the French Revolution. The domaine is currently under the direction of Cyrille Portalis, who continues to maintain the great traditions of this estate.
: The vineyards are cultivated in as natural a manner as possible with reliance on organic methods. In fact, during the spring months sheep are permitted to graze in the vineyards thereby eliminating any need to use herbicides and at the same time providing a natural compost.
: The wines of Pradeaux are brooding and difficult. Produced on the back of the noble Mourvedre, Pradeaux in its youthful stages is tannic, backward, and sometimes ornery. The wines are not destemmed; "elevage" in large oak foudres can last as long as four years; the essential blend is at least 95% Mourvedre; vines of less than 25 years of age are not used for the reds.
: Chateau Pradeaux "Cuvee La Rose Folle", is the standard Pradeaux. It is composed of 100% Mourvedre (old vines). The nose is a mix of honey and white flowers with a hint of animal fur; the color is ruby red; the fruit stains the palate and is lengthened by a near-perfect sense of roundness; the final attack is of ripe tannins that are dusty and sweet.
: Chateau Pradeaux "Cuvee Longue Garde", is born exclusively of the oldest Mourvedre vines on the estate (average age 45 years). Extraordinarily dense, with black notes to the color, the "Longue Garde" is marked by a strong scent of Provencal herbs combined with smoked red meat. This is a complete wine with incredible length; the flavors remind one of macerated plums and black currants. The super-ripe tannins are powerful and in perfect balance with the high fruit extract. This is the wine for the ages.
: Although the major part of the vineyards are planted to Mourvedre, the Chateau Pradeaux Bandol Rose is composed of Cinsault and Grenache as well as Mourvedre. After a short maceration on the skins, in order to extract a light color, the juice is fermented at low temperatures to retain freshness, fruit and bouquet. After being aged in stainless steel cuves, the wine is normally bottled in May or June of the year following the harvest. It is one of the richest of the Roses of France; dry but full-bodied with a floral bouquet. It is a very limited production wine as most of the production at Chateau Pradeaux is used to make the formidable Bandol Rouge."