The property had an history stretching back to Roman times, however the current guardians, the Manoncourt family, have been firmly installed for more than 125 years (arriving in 1892). The estate was once the largest in the Saint-Emilion wine region, at 200 hectares, but vineyards were gradually sold off (including to La Conseillante and Cheval Blanc).
The Figeac estate (54 hectares in a single block, with 41 hectares of vineyard) occupies a prime position on the Right Bank, in the northwest of the appellation, close to Pomerol and neighbouring Cheval Blanc.
Its gravel soils with little or no limestone or clay mean the two Cabernets outnumber Merlot, with 35% each of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, and 30% Merlot in the vineyard.
The vines average 35 years in age, with some much older, including Merlot planted in 1921.
Yields are low at Figeac – typically around 40hl/ha, vintage dependent – imbuing its wines with concentration, complexity and longevity.
The château has a plot dedicated to a massale selection programme, to preserve the property's genetic heritage.
The wine is made traditionally. The grapes are hand-picked and de-stemmed. Fermentation is in stainless steel, with malolactic taking place in barrel.
The wine is then aged in 100% new oak for 15 to 18 months, depending on the vintage. Romain Jean-Pierre is the Technical Director and Michel Rolland still consults.
In 2021, the estate unveiled its impressive new winery, a 5,000 square-metre building that has two levels below ground. Everything is gravity-fed and there's a specific room set aside for research and development.
The blend varies each year, but Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon tend to dominate the style.