A couple more estates from the tasting des Vignerons Independents at Lords, before moving on elsewhere.
DOMAINE DES GRANDES COSTES
An estate at Vacquières, with vines in three villages, Vacquières, Corconne and Sauteyrargues Jean-Christophe Garnier explained that he and his brother Guillaume have 14 hectares and bottled their first wine in 2000. For the moment Vacquières in not part of the Pic St. Loup but that will change in 2014. Pic St. Loup should also be recognised as an appellation in its own right for the 2013 vintage and they are also working towards a white Pic St. Loup. At the moment any white wine is Coteaux du Languedoc or vin de pays, or IGP.
2010 Coteaux du Languedoc. Musardises 9.00€
A blend of 70% Cinsaut with 15% each Grenache and Syrah. Attractive perfumed nose, very Cinsaut. Quite ripe spicy confit palate. Quite supple and rounded. Easy drinking
2008 Coteaux du Languedoc, la Sarabande – 12€
25% each of Cinsaut, Grenache Noir, Syrah and Carignan, with 24 months in vat. I thought the nose a touch reduced, but liked the palate a lot. Nice rounded fruit, quite supple with a streak of tannin. A sunny wine.
2009 Pic St. Loup - 18€
Half and half Syrah and Grenache – eighteen month élevage. 60% in wood. Quite ripe and perfumed with an oaky streak. On the palate I found that the oak needs time to tone down, as the wine has only just been bottled. So a bit adolescent, but with plenty of potential.
2006 Coteaux du Languedoc 7 Rangées. 35€
A blend of Syrah and Grenache. This has spent 24 months in new wood, and is then given 12 months ageing in bottle before release. I tend to be a bit allergic to new oak, but this really worked. It comes from one small plot, rather than just seven rows. Quite a ripe rounded spicy nose. Some attractive leathery notes on the palate. The oak is nicely integrated and the wine is evolving in a very satisfying way, showing some lovely fruit.
CHATEAU DE CABRIAC
I don’t normally associate Corbières with white wine; white is part of the appellation but in pretty limited quantity. However, I’ve had a soft spot for the white wine of Château de Cabriac for a few years, so was very pleased to have the chance to taste the 2011, a blend of Grenache, Roussanne and Rolle. 6.90€. The wine was not yet bottled, but it had already developed some attractive ripe rounded fruit, with some hints of white blossom, though it still had a slight adolescent note, which will obviously disappear once it has settled in bottle.
2009 Corbières Tradition – 6/.60€
This was showing very well, with some fresh spicy fruit on the nose, and a satisfyingly rounded palate, with some ripe fruit and a leathery finish. Quite a gutsy Corbières, but at the same time quite accessible.