David M. Bueker wrote:2008 Domaine du Dragon Cotes de Provence Hautes Vignes
Good QPR for only a little over $11. Meat, herbs and dark fruit. Quite easy to drink. Nothing complicated.
David M. Bueker wrote:Hautes Vignes
Robin Garr wrote:La Sauvageonne 2008 "Les Ruffes" Coteaux du Languedoc ($12.99)
Robin Garr wrote:David M. Bueker wrote:Hautes Vignes
I assume, by the way, that this is mere marketing-speak, meant to make monophone English speakers think it's something like "vieilles vignes." Can any of the Languedoc folks on board this month clarify this? Does "Hautes Vignes" have either a legal or at least a strong traditional significance in the region?
Joe Moryl wrote:2007 Chateau La Roque, Cuvee Clos des Benedictines, Coteaux du Languedoc:
Since I have enjoyed some of the reds from this producer, why not try this white, especially since it appears to be from a favored site? Composition is 45% each of Rolle (which is said to be the same as Italy's Vermentino) and Marsanne with the remaining 10% Rousanne, grown on calcaire soil. Warning sign: when I carefully examined the label and noticed this was barrel fermented and aged. But oak can be used with discretion...
The wine is a bright yellow, the color of olive oil (I noticed this similarity while having a glass while cooking). Not much action on the nose, with some dried fruit (apricots?) and a touch of wood. On the palate this reminds me of nothing so much as a barrel fermented chardonnay from the Finger Lakes! Spicy, with some ginger notes, a little butterscotch; pleasant enough but quite short (letting it warm to near room temperature improves things a bit). Doesn't really evoke the Languedoc; I suspect I might enjoy their basic unoaked white more.
A Kermit Lynch import, 13% abv, $17.
GrahamTigg wrote:Chateau St. Martin de la Garrigue, that's been mentioned a few times, is a magnificent place to visit - more Bordeaux château in trappings than rustic Languedoc. They make the best (and most expensive) Picpoul de Pinets - one of the few properties to correctly let the grapes get really ripe.
I've tried the reds over the years and had a tasting of some at the property last spring after a delightful days walk in the garrigue and vines. I find the reds lack character - to me they've had all the life and interest sucked out of them and the top wines need keeping to let the oak subside by which time you could say they taste as if they come from anywhere. One reason for this is I'm not convinced the area (Montagnac) is suited to make fine reds. At the basic level for a red with character I would go for something like Les Ruffes from La Sauvageonne every time. Totally accept I prefer the more modern style.
Sue Courtney wrote:This is a very interesting and informative discussion. Nice to see Rosemary George MW here, I met her when she was in NZ about 18 months ago.
I recently had a delicious lightly sparkling red (rosé) from the Mid Pyrennes (AOC Fronton). Is that the right area for this month's wine focus?
Jon Hesford wrote:I must say I agree with Graham about St Martin de la Garrigue (and Lascaux and Ch de Pennautier). They are very big producers and you can find their wines all over the world. They give you an idea of what the LR can offer in the way that Mondavi Woodbridge, Mouton Cadet Bordeaux and Guigal's basic Cotes du Rhone do for their regions.
David M. Bueker wrote:Jon Hesford wrote:I must say I agree with Graham about St Martin de la Garrigue (and Lascaux and Ch de Pennautier). They are very big producers and you can find their wines all over the world. They give you an idea of what the LR can offer in the way that Mondavi Woodbridge, Mouton Cadet Bordeaux and Guigal's basic Cotes du Rhone do for their regions.
If I were the Guigals I would be rather put out by being lumped together with Mouton Cadet and especially the significantly more industrial, faceless Mondavi Woodbridge. As a consumer, while I have drifted away from the Guigal to more artisanal products, I would see it in a very different category as well.
Thanks for the Hautes Vignes information.
Bob Parsons Alberta. wrote:Jamie Goode on Les Aurelles
They use new oak for the whites but not the reds: a couple of Bordeaux barriques (from Domaine de Chevalier) were used for the first vintage, but the results weren't great, so now Karl and Basile just use large oak vats to age their red wines. This is an encouraging sign: unfortunately, the first thing many ambitious vignerons do with their top wines is to smother their character with new oak. It's also good to see Carignan being used, a non-trendy grape that can do really well when low yields and old vines are involved. My only slight gripe is the prices. With the Aurel selling for almost £20, it's really battling it out with the big boys.
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