Château Brane-Cantenac is located in the Southern Médoc in the Cantenac-Margaux and is a bit more than a mile south of Château Margaux. Château Brane-Cantenac was classified as a Second Cru Classé du Medoc in 1855 and has been in the ownership of the Lurton Family since 1922 and is now run by the grandson Henri Lurton. When Henri took over the estate from his father Lucien in 1992 he put into practice all that he learnt throughout his extensive training and experience acquired in vineyards all over the world. Château Brane-Cantenac since then has seen major investments and the wine saw a strong improvement in quality again.
Château Brane-Cantenac is located within its vineyards of 90 hectares comprising of different plots. The biggest of these lies right in the front of the château on the allegedly finest bench of large-sized gravel within the Margaux appellation. The layers of stone from the former river bed of the Garonne, lie as deep as 10 metres here. These are unfertile souls which also have a warming influence, favouring the region’s preferred grate: the Cabernet Sauvignon. The 90 hectares of Château Brane-Cantenac are planted with more than two thirds of Cabernet Sauvignon, a fifth is Merlot and about a tenth Cabernet Franc.
The grapes of Château Brane-Cantenac are brought in and are carefully sorted by variety and plot. Henri Lurton combines the advantages of traditional wooden vats with those of stainless steel and concrete ones – their moderates sizes enables individual treatment of batches. Such combined techniques increase the options available at blending time. At Château Brane-Cantenac the type of barrel used for ageing is adopted to the vintage's nature, which is up to 50% new oak, and to the lengths of ageing required, which is around 18 months.
The Pocket Wine Guide by Hugh Johnson rates Château Brane-Cantenac with three coloured stars (out of five and coloured is for good value in its class) and recommends vintages as follows (bold years should be ready for drinking and a particular successful vintage is marked with a '): 82' 85 86' 88 89 90 95 96 98 99 00 01' 02.