The Carbonnieux 2016 Blanc has a gentle nose of peardrop, citrus peel and orange blossom: attractive if just missing the race and drive of either the 2014 and 2015. The palate is well balanced with lime and a touch of orange zest on the entry. There is good depth of fruit here and a pleasant saline finish—it just needs more acidity. Barrel Sample: 88-90 Points Wine Advocate
Clever use of extremely subtle oak that gives structure and body without being intrusive. This doesn't have the mineral directness and depth of, say 2011 or 2014, but it is a very good wine that will bring lots of pleasure. It majors on white flowers, touches of honeysuckle and white pepper spicing. Christophe Ollivier has taken the baton from Denis Dubourdieu who consulted here for 28 years. 90 Decanter
Chateau Carbonnieux white is a legendary wine. It is said that in the 18th century it was introduced to the Sultan of Constantinople's palace because of its clarity and was called "mineral water from Carbonnieux", thus defying the Islamic law. The clay–limestone of Garonne gravel found in the Pessac-Leognan Appellation certainly produces the best dry white wines in the Bordeaux region. When young, Carbonnieux white wines are delightfully refreshing and pure with a fruity, floral intensity. When mature they develop hints of dried and candied fruits giving scope for a large range of gastronomic pairings. The batches which will form part of this "cru classe" will be blended so as to induce an excellent complicity between the grape varieties. The chosen Semillon grapes will add structure to the liveliness of the Sauvignon grapes by giving them roundness and volume on the palate.
The history of Carbonnieux goes back a very long way, and records show that wine was made there at least as early as the 12th century. Benedictine monks from Sainte-Croix abbey in Bordeaux replanted and renovated the estate in the 18th century. They took advantage of the exceptionally pale, clear color of the white wine to label it as "Carbonnieux mineral water", which they then proceeded to ship to the sultan of Turkey. Marc Perrin acquired and restored the château in 1956. His son, Antony, currently manages the estate. The gravelly soil at Carbonnieux is perfectly drained thanks to the Eau Blanche stream that carries away any excess water. The 85 hectares of vines are evenly divided between red and white wine varieties. The white wine is fermented and aged in barrel for 10 months. The red wine is aged for 15 to 18 months in barrel, depending on the quality and characteristics of the vintage.