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Château Le Thil Red
Technical sheet .pdf
Château Le Thil
Château Le Thil White
Technical sheet .pdf
Château Le Thil Blanc
Château Le Thil

In 2012, Château Smith Haut Lafitte acquired 11.6 hectares of adjoining vineyards (3 ha of white wine varieties and 8.6 ha of red wine varieties) from their neighbour, Château le Thil Comte Clary. The wines of Château Le Thil, with a history of excellence, therefore now benefit from the same expertise and passion that guide Florence Cathiard, Daniel Cathiard, and the entire team at Château Smith Haut Lafitte in making their great growth and Château Cantelys according to a unique philosophy: Bio-Précision


Château Le Thil is located on a superb clay-limestone slope facing due south. The high clay content was conducive to choosing Merlot as the main grape variety. This type of soil has the advantage of staying cool, while still propitious to excellent ripening.  Cabernet Sauvignon is planted on the plateau part of the vineyard.

The Château

Built in 1737, Château le Thil – like its older brother Château Smith Haut Lafitte, to which it was linked by a royal drive – was privileged to have a series of prestigious owners.  

In order to receive members of her family who lived throughout Europe, Jeanne Clary (1853-1922) renovated Château Le Thil meticulously and with excellent taste. This traditional Bordeaux château features a shining example of Second Empire interior decoration.
Major work was also done on the outside, including lateral extensions and the adding of bay windows. All of the interior decoration was overseen by Eugène Lami (1800-1890).

By marrying Georges, Count Dufour de Raymond (1844-1912) – grandson of Jean-Baptiste Duffour-Debarte (1765-1842), a shipowner, merchant and Member of Parliament for the Gironde department, and Marie-Françoise Dubergier – Jeanne Clary became a member of prominent négociant families who helped to establish Bordeaux's reputation and wealth in the 18th and 19th centuries. Her uncle, as well as her husband’s guardian, Lodi Duffour-Dubergier (1797-1860), was Mayor of Bordeaux, President of the General Council, and President of the Bordeaux Chamber of Commerce, as well as the founder and President of the Horticultural Association. The owners of Le Thil and Smith lived at Smith-Haut-Lafitte, which was linked to Château Le Thil by a drive that still exists. Jeanne's father, François, Count Clary (1841-1889), a French senator, lived for a long time at Château Le Thil. He was the son of Nicolas Clary (1760-1823), a French peer and famous economist whose advice was sought by Napoleon.

His aunt, Désirée Clary (1777-1860) – the sister of Nicolas, Count Clary, and sister-in-law of Joseph Bonaparte (1768-1844), King of Naples and Sicily, and King of Spain, who married Julie Clary (1771-1845) – wed Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte (1763-1844), a Marshal in the French army as well as Prince and Duke of Pontecorvo and King of Sweden and Norway, in 1818.

Their descendants continue to sit on the thrones of Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Belgium and Luxembourg.
Château Le Thil remained in the hands of Nicolas' heirs, Count Clary and Jeanne Clary, Countess Duffour de Raymond, until August 2012, when Florence and Daniel Cathiard, owners of Château Smith Haut Lafitte, acquired the estate. In doing so, they reconstituted a major historic vineyard that provided a link two centuries ago between Lodi Duffour Dubergier, Mayor of Bordeaux, President of the Chamber of Commerce, only signer of the famous 1855 classification and owner of Château Smith Haut Lafitte as of 1842, and his nephew, Georges Duffour de Raymond.

The wines of Château Le Thil, with a history of excellence, therefore now benefit from the same expertise and passion that guide Florence, Cathiard, Daniel Cathiard and the entire team at Château Smith Haut Lafitte in making their great growth and the wines of Château Cantelys according to a unique philosophy: Bio-Précision.

The grounds

Owned by the Duffour family since 1830, the grounds of Château Le Thil cover more than eight hectares. They were laid out in the 19th century by Louis-Ferdinand Fischer (1810-1873), a landscape architect highly-reputed in Bordeaux. He was born at Le Thil and was also responsible for designing Bordeaux's Jardin Public among other gardens. The grounds and gardens at Le Thil are also connected to Château Smith Haut Lafitte by the "Allée Royale", or Royal Drive, which enabled music lovers of the time to attend outdoor concerts in a place named Chapeau de Paille (meaning "Straw Hat").

A vast sloping lawn surrounds the château on all sides. Ornamental ponds, a river and waterfalls give an added dimension to the landscape. Many different species of trees are also to be found on the estate: sequoia, bald cypress, Virginia tulip, sweet gum, ginkgo biloba, magnolia, plane, black pine, maritime pin, stone pine, Scots pine, cedar of Lebanon, Atlas cedar, Himalaya cedar, weeping beech, European beech, lime, chestnut, ash, field maple, sycamore, white poplar, black poplar, cork oak, pedunculate oak, downy oak, northern red oak, holly oak, elm, alder, etc. The river (the Bouran), which surrounds a miniature island, flows into a small lake. This is crossed by several footbridges, and stone benches are located at various points. White swans swim in the water. The rows of trees provide a beautiful frame to this attractive setting.

The similarity between the grounds at Château Le Thil and those of Château de Malmaison and the Elysée are not a coincidence: Louis-Ferdinand Fischer often accompanied the Duffour family on their trips to Paris.

Château Smith Haut Lafitte – 33650 Bordeaux Martillac, France
Tel. +33 (0)5 57 83 11 22 – Fax +33 (0)5 57 83 11 21 – f.cathiard@smith-haut-lafitte.com
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