The south of France, with its varying appellations, was one of the first wine regions that I fell in love with. I still retain an affection for the likes of Pic St Loup, Corbieres, Faugeres and Cotes du Roussillon, but it’s ages since I have visited – something I should try to address next year. [...]
Very enjoyable lunch today at famed gastropub the Anchor and Hope, on The Cut, within a few long strides of Waterloo Station.
It was my first time here, and I came away impressed. It’s everything a gastropub should be, with a rustic interior, a no reservations policy, and honest, well-prepared, interesting food at sensible prices.
I started [...]
I’m on a bit of a Languedoc roll at the moment. Here’s another really delicious, quite serious, yet well-priced wine. And it’s white.
La Chapelle de Bebian 2009 Coteaux du Languedoc, France
A blend of Grenache Blanc, Roussanne and Clairette. Very distinctive nose: fresh, minty, herby with a hint of fennel and some anise. The palate is [...]
This is fantastic. It’s a blend of seven different grape varieties (Syrah, Carignan, Cabernet Sauvignon, Mourvedre, Counoise, Grenache Noir, Terret Gris), made without any oak. And it manages to catch an almost Burgundian precision and elegance, with a natural, unadorned purity to the fruit. This is the sort of southern French red that I love.
This is a slightly curiously labelled wine. 30670 is the postcode of where the wine comes from, and it’s made by Domaine de la Dromadaire (the camel’s domaine?), which is a partnership by the Goellner and Redon families in the Languedoc. The innovative packaging contains a really appealing Languedoc red, which flirts with jamminess but [...]
This wine, from Gerard Bertrand’s Ch l’Hospitalet, is really impressive. Quite elegant, which is an achievement for a warm region like the Languedoc.
Château l’Hospitalet La Reserve 2007 La Clape, Languedoc, France
13.5% alcohol. A blend of 40% Syrah, 30% Mourvèdre, 30% Grenache. Beautifully aromatic with sweet, pure berry and cherry fruit notes. Quite liqueur-like. The [...]
I’m just so impressed by the wines of Jean-Claude Mas, from France’s Languedoc. Five of his wines were in yesterday’s Asda Press tasting, and they were all brilliant – he can even make Merlot taste interesting.
The wines show lovely fruit purity, varietal typicity and great balance. They’re modern but not spoofy. And they’re affordable.
This wine [...]
It’s always good to find an affordable wine that really over-delivers. This is fantastic stuff, and it’s an utter bargain.
Château de Pennautier 2008 Cabardès, France
From a small (500 ha) appellation in the Languedoc, this is one of my bargain wines of the year. It shows distinctive, savoury, gravelly, structured dark fruits with good acidity and [...]
It seems I’m having a bit of joy in the Languedoc. I may have to make a visit soon to see what’s going on. This is a beautifully pure, fresh, natural expression of Minervois.
Domaine Jean Baptiste Senat Minervois ‘Mais ou est Donc Ornica’ 2008
13.5% alcohol. Deep coloured. A wonderfully pure, fresh, elegant expression of [...]
Simply a note, on a stunner from Sylvain Fadat in the Languedoc, a region I fell in love with many years ago but have somewhat neglected of late.
Domaine d’Aupilhac ‘Les Cocalières’ 2007 Montpeyroux, Languedoc, France
13.5% alcohol. 40% Syrah, 30% Mourvèdre, 30% Grenache. Beautifully packaged, this is a wonderfully bright, elegant Languedoc red, but it’s quite [...]