The sub-soils of Château Tour Saint-Fort’s 14-hectare vineyard are 80% clay over what is referred to as Saint-Estèphe limestone. This is what gives it its distinctive identity and unique features. The remaining 20% are gravelly and clay-gravel soils located in two other parts of the village, near the chateau. On average, the vines are over 50 years old for the Château Tour Saint-Fort.
At harvest time, each vineyard plot is harvested and vinified separately to fully preserve the identity and quality of each grape variety and terroir.
Winemaking techniques remain traditional and geared to the desired style of wine. Winemaking starts after pre-fermentation cold soaking and uses a system which automatically controls the temperature (hot and cold) in stainless steel tanks. Because every vintage is different, we are constantly adjusting our technical choices. Extraction is one of the most important stages in crafting a wine. Depending on the ripeness of the fruit, we use rack-and-return or pumping over, adjusting their frequency and the number of times they are used. Post-fermentation maceration can last for 3 to 4 weeks on average, depending on the structure of the wines. Management of oakiness is proportionate to the quality of the end wines.
The vintage is structured through barrel ageing for at least 12 months. As a general rule, the percentage of new oak is no higher than 40% for the Château Tour Saint-Fort.