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The wines of  Domaine du Garinet, Cahors

Domaine du Garinet, 46800 Le Boulvé, France
Tel: 05 65 32 96 43 Fax: 05 65 31 96 43
E-mail: mike.spring@worldonline.fr

English couple Mike and Sue Spring set up at Le Boulvé as recently as 1994. They have just 2.5 ha of vines: 1.6 ha red grapes and 0.9 ha of white. Despite their modernist approach, they maintain that their goal is not to make a new world wine, but to make good Cahors. For their red wine they use exclusively the Auxerrois grape (known elsewhere as Côt or Malbec), eschewing the trend to use an increasing proportion of Merlot to soften the wines (up to 30% is allowed). 

They appear to be thoughtful growers, and the wines bear testament to this. As an example, one of the innovations they have made is to grow their vines on a higher trellis than the traditional low hedges. Since they implemented this, they’ve found that they achieve greater ripeness and they’ve been ready to harvest earlier than their neighbours with whom they share the harvesting machine. They make three different Cahors: an unoaked ‘Classique’, an old-oak matured ‘Reserve’ and the barrique-aged ‘Fût de Chêne’, which sees some new oak. All are quite impressive, savoury reds that represent stunning value for money at the cellar door prices.

The wines

Classique 1998 AC Cahors
An unoaked cuvee, this is a deep purple colour. Tasty liquoricey, caramel-edged nose is ripe and enticing. The palate is chunky, savoury and quite inky, showing ripe fruit, some smooth tannins and nice balance. Very good

Reserve 1998 AC Cahors
Matured in used barrels. Really lovely nose showing berry fruit and liquorice. Juicy, rich palate with good acidity and lots of fruit. Quite a nice texture. This is impressive stuff. Very good+

Elevé en Fût de Chêne 1998 AC Cahors
Aged for one year in barrels, 25% of which are new each year. Lovely nose: ripe and sweet with a liquoricey edge. A real crowd pleaser. Lovely sweet palate with nice texture. The oak is quite prominent but not overdone. Very good+


Le Blanc 2001 Vin de Pays du Lot
This is a blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. Very crisp and modern with an aromatic edge and nice texture. Crisp with good acidity. Attractive stuff. Very good+

Rosé Saignée
Pale pink. Light, crisp and fresh with good acidity. Slightly green edge but very refreshing. Good/very good


Domaine visited: August 2002
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