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The beautiful second wine is Alain Vauthier’s 2011 La Chapelle d’Ausone. It possesses a dense ruby/purple color along with the nobility, class, finesse, precision, purity and copious blue and black fruits intermixed with a floral component, good minerality, and a medium-bodied, intense, rich personality. Never heavy or over-bearing, this is a beauty. As I have written many times in the past, the Vauthiers are making a “second wine” that is greater than many of the outstanding wines produced at this estate in the 20th century. This wine should drink well for 15 or more years.
Born in Bordeaux in 310, Decimus Magnus Ausonius was an excellent orator all his life. His genius earned him an enormous reputation in the Gallo-Roman world, as he progressed from academia via politics to literature. He was made Preceptor and then Consul under the Emperor Gratian, and oscillated continuously between writing and positions of authority. His poetry is renowned for being amongst the most brilliant of his period and was one of the first to sing the praises of Bordeaux and its wines.
Ausonius was born in the vines and was their unchallenged champion. The traces he left in the Bordeaux area have long been a source of fascination for historians. From the end of the sixteenth century, the search began for his most imposing estate, Lucaniacum, whose wine Ausonius extolled the virtues of. Today, there remains little doubt that this property was located where the present Château stands.