A brief history about our family vineyard

More than a tradition- a passion

The majority of our vineyards have been part of the family tradition that dates back to 19th Century

On 10th August 1812, witnessed by the Notary Antoine Cleux, the Cailley family purchased a parcel of land for600.00 Fin metal coins, which was to become Château Le Maine Martin. The family tradition and know-how has been handed down from generation to generation. Château Toulouze has always been famous for producing good wines. In 1886, the Fifth Edition of the wine review ‘”Bordeaux et ses Vins” (published by Féret et Fils, editors in Bordeaux) mentioned  a harvest of 60 barrels of red wine and 25 barrels of white wine being produced there. The wines had an excellent reputation. However, the property was gradually split up due to successive inheritance.

In 1956 the vineyard was badly hit by frost and had to be reconstituted, representing only13 hectaresin 1979. That is when I decided to join forces with my father Yves. Firstly we proceeded to rebuild and increase the size of the vineyard, a acquired22 hectaresin the vineyard appellation area of Graves de Vayres, which became Château Toulouze, increasing the family vineyard to a total of40 hectares. 

 No matter how good is the land, the climate and the grapes, a great wine cannot be produced without good winemakers. Making use of our ancestral winemaking tradition, combined with the most modern techniques, we consider ourselves to be true artisans. We have inherited this savoir-faire from our forefathers to which we have devoted our lives and this commands great respect. The essence of my winemaking is to maintain the traditional vinification methods, with great respect for the environment

2012 marked the arrival of the 8th Generation : my sons Jérôme and Gil-Paul now assist me and have brought some fresh ideas and innovations, the most important of which has been to initiate new techniques by ageing part of our wines in oak.

I like to produce wines with good fruit, neither ‘jammy’ nor ‘bodybuilders’, but  wines for pleasure, elegant, with supple, soft  tannins  that can at the same time be drunk young and can also age well.  In order to achieve this, the vines have to be treated with a lot of care and attention. The different tasks in the vineyard are carried out manually and the soil has to be carefully ploughed. The vinification also has to be carried out with utmost care, harmonising the terroir, grape variety and vintage. The blending and ageing of the wines enable us to produce a wine range of luscious, fruity and delicate wines as well as more complex wines, with a hint of oak, aged in ½ muid (French oak casks) for 12 months.

 Cailley Générations, best resumes our family identity. A small team of men and women that share the same passion: producing wines that are the full expression of the terroir using the original, artisanal methods. You will find that I have applied this philosophy at every stage of my winemaking, from the grape growing to the final vinification of our wines.

This passion for our terroir and the wines of Bordeaux that has fired many generations of our family has enabled us to produce handcrafted wines with their own special character, that are our own personal interpretation of the style of traditional winemaking that we wish to share with our customers.

We have also selected a range of ‘petits Châteaux’ representing wines from the other main vineyard areas in the Bordeaux winegrowing region, that we have chosen for their originality and exceptional quality and that are also now available in our online shop.

Wine is all about sensuality-we would like to share this with you.

Alain Cailley