Chateau Franc Le Maine Saint Emilion Grand Cru 2016: A 92-Point Triumph in Elegance

by Thomas Rosalia | November 29, 2023

In the world of fine wines, few accolades hold as much weight as a high score from The Tasting Panel Magazine. In the case of Chateau Franc Le Maine Saint Emilion Grand Cru 2016, the esteemed vineyard recently received a notable 92 points, solidifying its status as a remarkable wine in the eyes of critics and connoisseurs alike.


Chateau Franc Le Maine, a Saint-Émilion Grand Cru nestled in the southeast of the village Saint-Laurent des Combes, has a history that dates back to the 15th century. Often referred to as the “sleeping beauty” of the region, this historic vineyard underwent a transformative journey when it was acquired by Philippe Bardet in 2008. Since then, Bardet has dedicated himself to revitalizing the estate and crafting wines that reflect the unique terroir of the region.

One of the pivotal changes implemented by Bardet was a comprehensive adjustment of the vineyard’s ecosystem. With a meticulous approach, the estate’s 11.7 hectares of land, featuring a combination of sand, clay, and gravel, were subjected to important draining and stimulating measures. The result was a rejuvenated environment conducive to producing exceptional grapes.

Vineyard Details:

Chateau Franc Le Maine boasts 5,80 plants per hectare with an average age of 44 years, yielding 45 hectoliters per hectare. The selection of grapes is a meticulous process, employing the Tribaie and Calibaie methods to ensure that only the finest fruits make their way into the winemaking process.

Winemaking Techniques:

Following the careful grape selection, the estate adheres to traditional bordelaise vinification techniques, utilizing thermo-regulated tanks for the process. The wines undergo long maceration without fulling, contributing to the depth and complexity of the final product. With a total annual production of 70,000 bottles, Chateau Franc Le Maine meticulously crafts each vintage to express the unique characteristics of the terroir.

The 2016 Vintage:

The 2016 vintage, a blend of 67% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Franc, and 1% Cabernet Sauvignon, stands as a testament to the meticulous craftsmanship at Chateau Franc Le Maine. The gentle soaks in new-generation tanks, designed to keep the cap down in the juice, promote the extraction of silky skin tannins. The wine is then aged for an impressive 18 months, allowing it to mature and develop its full potential.

Tasting Notes:

Pouring from the bottle, the Château Franc le Maine 2016 reveals a captivating deep ruby to purple color. The nose is fresh, dynamic, and expressive, setting the stage for an elegant and persistent palate. With a delightful density, impeccable balance, and a lingering finish, this vintage showcases the meticulous care invested in its production.


Chateau Franc Le Maine Saint Emilion Grand Cru 2016, with its recent accolade of 92 points from The Tasting Panel Magazine, stands tall as a symbol of excellence in winemaking. From the revitalization of its historic vineyards to the careful crafting of each vintage, Philippe Bardet and his team have created a wine that captures the essence of the terroir and delights the senses with its elegance and finesse. As the “sleeping beauty” awakens, the world takes notice of the extraordinary wines emerging from Chateau Franc Le Maine.

Chateau Franc Le Maine Saint Emilion Grand Cru 2016 earned an impressive 92 points from The Tasting Panel Magazine. Acquired by Philippe Bardet in 2008, this historic estate underwent a transformative revival. With meticulous vineyard management, a 2016 blend of 67% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Franc, and 1% Cabernet Sauvignon was crafted. The resulting wine, aged for 18 months, boasts a deep ruby hue, a dynamic nose, and an elegant palate with impeccable balance. This accolade reaffirms Chateau Franc Le Maine’s commitment to producing exceptional Saint-Émilion Grand Cru wines.