This weekend we tried two reds, one with a famous name, the other with no memorable name. My blind taste was the less well known of the two – a wine from the Languedoc, near Lagamas. Languedoc-Roussillon (to give it its full name) produces nearly as much wine as Argentina which would put it about fifth in the world – if it was a country, that is. And this is despite the production being half what it was forty years ago. Wine lake? More like a wine ocean.
Quality is now the by-word and the prolific Carignan grape is losing ground to more Syrahs and Mourvedres, the blend which made up our wine. The 2007 Saut de Cote (ABV 13%) is made by Chabanon who farms biodynamically, uses wild yeasts to ferment and matures the wine for three years in concrete eggs before bottling without fining or filtering. Quite a list of plus points for the purists, then.
The colour, ruby red and intense, showed maturity but not age, and it had a rich cooked plum nose (Richard ‘medicinal’). Not particularly heavyweight, it was very savoury with tart cherry notes and a dry, long finish. I ventured ‘rustic’ but it was better then that, more ‘characterful’ and would be great with strong flavoured foods. Think cassoulet – mmm.
[Richard: from TWS, around £20 which I think is a fair price given the age and method of production. In fact, better than I had hoped and I can’t improve on Geoff’s description. A very enjoyable, savoury (that word again) wine.]