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31 October 2008

Languedoc: Château La Bastide, Corbières

Château La Bastide from www.chateau-la-bastide.frAnne-Marie and Guilhem Durand bought this cute property twenty years ago, lying in the deepest northern corner of the Corbières appellation; just northwest of Lézignan and a pebble's throw away from Minervois country, actually. Their no-less-than 100 ha (250 acres) feature quite a lot of Syrah, which, looking at the wines, seems to like it here bathing in all that gravel, chalk and slate; with some young Mourvèdre coming on stream as well as less common Pinot Noir and Viognier, for example (and why not?). Anyway, the Durand family exports most of their wines, so good news for those of us in the US, Canada, UK, Belgium, Luxembourg or Germany (according to the printed blurb - see website for more details). I tried these in late October 2008, at a tasting laid on by the appellation people at Château Boutenac:

2007 Viognier Vin de Pays d'Hauterive - nice exotic style with juicy v creamy v lightly crisp mouth-feel. 85
2006 Syrah Vin de Pays d'Hauterive - attractive spicy menthol and cherries on the nose, bit of a chunky framework v fruity with rustic edges. 85
(Syrah Grenache) - enticing herbal v creamy red and black fruit mix, more concentrated than you think it's going to be with firm texture and a bit of weight too. 87
2006 cuvée Plénitude Vin de Pays d'Hauterive (Pinot Noir Merlot Syrah) - herbal 'sweet & savoury' characters move on to light chocolate texture, a tad over-extracted and firm but it's interesting quand meme...
2006 L'Optimée
(Syrah Grenache) - smokier richer style showing fair concentration v solid tannins, power and savoury v dark fruit on the finish. 89+

Château La Bastide, 11200 Escales. Tel: 04 68 27 08 47, http://www.chateau-la-bastide.fr/.

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