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Showing posts with label Rully. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Rully. Show all posts

10 May 2016

France: 'wines of the moment'


Domaine Marguerite Dupasquier Rully blanc 2013 (13% abv) - I bought a few bottles of this over a year ago (click to see note made on International Chardonnay Day last May); this was the last one and what a revelation. Buttery and almost exotic with light toasty coconut edges, nicely rounded and creamy yet still has some fresh bite too. £10.50 Asda.


P. Desroches Brut non-vintage (Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, 12%) - Made by the Nicolas Feuillatte winery actually, this stylish well-made crowd-pleaser confirms that Marks & Spencer know what they're doing on the Champers front. Elegant yet toasty/yeasty, eminently drinkable at £14.50 on offer! It supposedly usually costs £29, but I wouldn't pay that for it. Funny how the other multiple grocers, including Tesco who was the worst offender, have stopped doing these so-called (and dishonest) half-price deals (which blatantly aren't), but Marks is still doing it on certain Champers labels anyway. Mustn't grumble ah.
Buy my Champagne e-supplement HERE.


Alain Grignon Carignan Sélection Vieilles Vignes 2013, Pays d'Hérault (12.5%) - Attractive example of the fashion for making varietal reds from old-vine Carignan, this is aromatic and quite soft with fairly intense berry fruit flavours. Dunne's €12.50/€9 on offer in the Republic/about £9-£10 in Belfast? (Most of Dunne's NI stores aren't licensed it appears).
Laurent Miquel Syrah 'special edition' 2014, Pays d'Oc (13%) - Lovely pure peppery black cherry fruit with a light bitter twist of tannin on the palate, plenty of sexy Syrah style but reasonably subtle with it. Dunne's €9 on offer.
Domaine Jones
Fitou 2014 (old vine Carignan, Grenache, Syrah from 15 small plots; 14.5%) - Concentrated (blue)berry fruit with uplifting crunchy vs sweet profile mix, lively spicy and powerful finish. £87-£95 case of 6 (depending on mix).
Blanc Barrique 2010 (Grenache gris, 13.5%) - The follow up vintage to apparently a 'by accident' barrel-aged white, made in limited quantities, this is quite oaky to start yet has delicious nutty oxidised and oily characters and rounded texture, unusual and tasty. £80 for 6.
Château l'Argentier E&F Jourdan Cinsault Vieilles Vignes 2014 (old vines) - Lovely aromatic sweet fruit, soft and oily palate although actually pretty concentrated with mature vs fresh finish. £14.99 Red Squirrel Wine.
Château Montfin Saint-Jacques 2014 Corbières blanc (Roussanne, Grenache blanc, organic) - Concentrated and intense dry white, zingy yeast-lees notes vs oily rounded mouth-feel, lovely wine. £90 for 6 Joie de Vin. More Montfin HERE.

More of the latest from the Jones', Argentier, Montfin and lots more besides from the Languedoc to follow as an update to my 'French wine tasting and touring' e-magazine (drawn from extensive tastings at the recent 'Outsiders' tasting in Dublin and at the London Wine Fair)...

Bordeaux and the South-West

Château Lassègue Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2006 (Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, 13.5% abv) - This posh chateau is found lurking among some of the Saint-Emilion region's best vineyard sites, and is part of the Jackson Family Wines' group, "a collection of premium wineries owned privately by Barbara Banke and the Jackson family," the blurb says, probably better known for their West Coast US wines. Still dense and quite oaky for a ten year-old red, although with distinct brownish hints to its otherwise dark colour, it shows a classy mix of lush plummy fruit, maturing meaty notes and spicy nicely textured oak/tannin combo to finish. c. £25 a bottle - £152 for a case of 6 from closcru.com.
Domaine de la Maletie Monbazillac 2013 (Sémillon, Sauvignon blanc, 12.5%) - Bargain Sauternes replacement made in the same way but in Monbazillac on the Dordogne River in the Bergerac region. Delicious exotic apricot marmalade nose with spicy 'volatile' edges, lush and sweet but with nicely balanced freshness and lighter touch. £7.99 Lidl.
Combel la Serre 'Pur Fruit de Causse' 2014 Cahors (Malbec, 12.5%) - Alluring fruity 'funky' nose, very Malbec berry and spice style though with light bite and grip. £13.99 Red Squirrel Wine. Update on CLS to follow, and lots more Cahors HERE.


JP Muller 2012 Riesling Engelberg Grand Cru (12.5%) - Pretty classy dry white at this price: classic developing Riesling nose with aromatic oily 'mineral' notes, similar maturing palate profile yet still quite concentrated with some fresh bite and elegant finish. €12.99/€9.99 on offer Lidl (Ireland).

21 May 2015

International Chardonnay Day: Rully

Despite one website (in Australia I think) saying it's this Saturday, most seem to agree that International Chardonnay Day is indeed today. Here's my tasty Chardonnay tip for the day then, from towards the southern end of Burgundy, in celebration of the many-faced Chardy grape. Once ultra-hip, now relegated to the shelves below piles of Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio, if the average UK supermarket is anything to go by. But still more interesting and versatile than either of those two arguably...

2013 Domaine Marguerite Dupasquier Rully AOC blanc (100% Chardonnay, 13% abv) - quite classy wine actually showing a skilful mix of background toasty oak vs tasty buttery oaty characters with yeast-lees and nutty undertones (probably a bit of barrel-stirring on the winemaking front, as is the custom in much of Burgundy) vs a tighter crisper finish balancing the whole out nicely. Try with trout, smoked salmon, cured ham, certain cheeses even. £10.50 at Adsa, although I got half-a-dozen bottles on sale for a few quid less making it a fair bargain.

29 March 2013

Burgundy: Les Champs de l'Abbaye, Côte Chalonnaise

Photo from www.rawfair.com
Alain and Isabelle Hasard (which means chance or coincidence in French, appropriately perhaps as I did indeed just happen to stop by at their table at Millésime Bio organic wine show a few weeks ago in Montpellier, France) own a few little vineyards in different sites in the Côte de Beaune and (mainly) Côte Chalonnaise (the latter being that chunk roughly in the middle of Burgundy's wine-lands, between the Beaune and Macon vineyard areas). They're based in the hilltop village of Aluze - and have two vineyards here called Clos de Roches and Les Gardes - which lies to the southwest of Rully where they have one plot called Les Cailloux, and slightly northwest of Mercurey where they own two more sites called La Brigadière and Les Marcoeurs. Les Sous Roches in Monthélie (between Volnay and Meursault) completes the Hasard family's patchwork picture; and they also make sparkling wine in addition to the whites and reds sourced from the aforementioned appellations. They've been certified organic - or rather their vineyards have! - since 1999 and are "inspired by biodynamics." I like their nice and simple explanation of organic farming and why they do it: "It teaches us to search for the origins of problems that may arise rather than simply treat the consequences, and to establish harmony rather than fight against it." Otherwise, it looks like their winemaking is pretty traditional and towards 'minimal intervention' (to use a rather overused cliché) for both reds and whites, which in general are aged in 25% to 50% of new oak barrels, "because our wines are so concentrated," as it says modestly in their profile blurb! These are bottled "without fining and filtration... our wines are living products." Here's what I thought of them then:

2010 Rully blanc Les Cailloux (Chardonnay) - enticing creamy vs citrus fruit with a touch of toasted oak, quite subtle and elegant with fresh acidity vs some weight too; still a bit closed up, quite fine and needs more time.
2011 Rully blanc Les Cailloux (Chardonnay) - more aromatic with nutty and peachy fruit, more forward than the 2010 and a touch richer and more buttery already, showing subtle toasty notes vs freshness too. Attractive now actually.
2011 Mercurey blanc La Brigadière (Chardonnay) - a tad richer and fuller with peachy vs toasty flavours, again it's quite delicate and tight on the palate, promising though.
2011 Mercurey rouge La Brigadière (Pinot Noir) - subtle red fruits with lightly funky edges, juicy and soft with a little grip and elegant fresh acidity. Nice wine, drinking well now.

Raeburn Fine Wines (Edinburgh and London) imports their range into the UK, priced at £21.50-£22.50 for some of the wines tasted above or earlier vintages; Leon Stolarski also expressed an interest in them on his blog following a trip there. They cost about €15-€20 cellar door; and you can get some of them in Dublin too according to www.sourgrapes.ie (from about €15). They export to "the US and Far East..." as well, Alain told me at the fair: contact him on alainhasard@wanadoo.fr for more details.


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