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The terroir

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The vine-growing area of Bordeaux is divided into three major regions, separated by the rivers Garonne (rising in the Pyrenees) and Dordogne (rising in the Massif central) where they join to form the Gironde estuary. To the West is the Atlantic so vineyards have a maritime environment.

Lisennes stands on the right bank of the Garonne on the hills of Entre-deux-Mers.  The ‘terroir’ (soil and climate) benefits from a mild oceanic climate.  Spring usually arrives early, the summers are hot but temperate with long, fairly sunny autumns.  It has mild winters.

Most of the soil at Lisennes is clay-limestone with the addition of some silica silt due to the proximity of the river. This soil is of two types.  Loams, both fine and coarse have a high silica content and the mildly calcium bearing limestone.  Both have good structure and are favourable to viticulture. The heavier loams need more intensive working to aerate the soil.

The etymology (history of words and their development) of ‘Lisennes’ is evocative of rich, dense soil.  The root ‘lise’, found in the French words ‘glaise’ [clay] and ‘enliser’ [to be bogged down], thus refers to the usual characteristics of the soil and sub-soil of Entre-deux-Mers.  ‘This soil in its substance is rich, heavy, lize, dense and retains humidity”, as François Rabelais wrote in Le Tiers Livre in 1546.

Lisennes’ 55 hectares are entirely devoted to vineyards and production of high-quality wines, and is planted in the renowned Bordeaux varieties of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc.