From a mixture of sand, gravel, and clay soils, this unheralded terroir produces wines well-above its pedigree thanks to the extraordinary efforts of proprietors Chantal and Gerard Perse. The wines are given a 4- to 5-week maceration in both stainless steel and oak, and are aged sur-lie in new oak. The dark ruby/purple-colored 2003 offers up notes of smoky meats, melted licorice, jammy black cherries, spice box, earth, and cedar. This plump, fleshy, sexy, unfined, unfiltered wine represents a classic blend of 60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. Yields were 32 hectoliters per hectare, and the alcohol is 13.5%.