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02 April 2013

Languedoc: Domaine de la Marfée, Montpellier

By coincidence (apologies in advance for the linguistic pun for those of you who do French), La Marfée is Francoise and Thierry Hasard's baby, a name I just chanced across on my other blog in a post about Alain and Isabelle Hasard's Les Champs de l'Abbaye estate in Burgundy. I've since found out that Alain and Thierry are indeed brothers, so it must have been vinous fate that I tasted both guys' wines at the same event. In any case, moving swiftly back to the Languedoc and more specifically a village called Murviel-lès-Montpellier found on the northwestern outskirts of said southern French city (next door to St. Georges d'Orques), where I met Thierry recently and sampled La Marfée range (at Millésime Bio organic wine show in fact), a name I sort-of knew but wasn't very familiar with his wines. These are sourced from several different plots around the village, which have been treated to the biodynamic way since 2003. Thierry decided to take this plunge after "a very convincing introductory training course by Pierre Masson," and says he notices the difference in vineyard and vine health and performance. More @ www.la-marfee.com where I copied this intriguing photo from:

Not making meringue but "dynamizing cow horn dung!"
2010 Frissons d'Ombelles white (mostly Roussanne + Chardonnay & Petit Manseng) - enticing yeast lees and toasty tones, seems quite concentrated then closes up on a tight finish; not very obvious at the moment or is there something missing? Overpriced at £15.50.
2010 Les Gamines (50% Mourvèdre + Syrah & Grenache) - aromatic fruit with rustic edges, rich dark palate with meaty and black cherry/olive flavours, tasty ripe dried black fruits developing savoury notes, attractive chunky mouth-feel yet the tannins are quite soft. Good stuff. £13.50 €20.45
2010 Della Francesca (mostly Mourvèdre) - again this is fairly supple and layered with concentrated dark cherry and raisin fruit vs a light bitter twist, meaty savoury flavours vs that 'sweet' fruit, nice balance and style in the end. £18
2010 Les Vignes qu'on abat (old vine Carignan) - rustic 'inky' aromas, concentrated though with lively fruit and good depth, nice fresh bite on the finish. £25
2010 Champs murmurés (Syrah, Mourvèdre) - spicier with lots of black cherry, again a light bitter twist of tannin (but not astringent) adds to its tasty long finish. £25
Some of these wines are available from Leon Stolarski in the UK (£ prices above) and Le Caveau in Kilkenny, Ireland (€).


  1. Richard - Alain Hasard is actually Thierry's brother, so very much a relation!

    Nice tasting notes. I had similar reservations about some of the 2009's, when I tasted them at Vinisud in 2012. Oh ye (or in this case me) of little faith, for by the time I took delivery at the end of the summer, they were all beginning to open out beautifully. Frissons d'Ombelles is, in my opinion, a good match for many wines from the Cote d'Or - and therefore, if anything, *under*-priced. Seek out a bottle with a year or two more age and you might see what I mean.

  2. Thanks for filling in the blank Leon. Even more of a coincidence then that I tasted both guy's wines at Millésime Bio! Although I knew the Marfée name so did sort-of look out for them. Will correct that immediately. Liked their 2010s generally, even though, yes, some of them need a bit more time in bottle. Cheers, Richard.



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Header image: Château de Flandry, Limoux, Languedoc. Background: Vineyard near Terrats in Les Aspres, Roussillon.