Mas Seren Lilith 2018
Mas Seren is a virtual Narnia, nestled among forested hills and babbling brooks in the heart of the Cevennes in southern France. We first met Emmanuelle Schoch in 2015 and from the first moment we knew we were onto somthing special. Her welcome was warm, and she gave the tour with her husband in their 1986 VW Vanagon. We were jealous--it was the camper version.
We just returned last month, February 2019, and got wowed all over again. I don't want to oversell it, but man, this really is some kind of special place. Emmanuelle has her vineyards separated into about a dozen different parcels--each with a distinctive earth, each planted to a single variety. It's like a cover story to a book on terroir.
In order to reach her vineyards we drove 30 minutes through the Cevagnol countryside, down narrow roads and up and down switchbacks. It was glorious. When we came to a stream in the road Emmanuelle explained how the small concrete bridge was destroyed the day before harvest in 2014. It required them to pick all the grapes, get them by tractor to one side of the creek, then move them by hand to the other side and onto their truck. The story speaks to Emmanuelle's tenacity. Her vineyard situation may have struck me as fantasyland, but sometimes the work is all nightmare!
Old Vine Grenache (50%) and Cinsault (50%) comprise this wine--a savory, mouthfilling, ample red grown deep in the Cevennes countryside. For me there is no better value in the Languedoc. If this wine said "Chateauneuf" on the label it would be 3x the price.
And, it's amazing what has been created here simply using fiberglass tanks. Not a splinter of oak to be found. Plump, juicy, round, and complex. What more could you want?
As with all of Emmaneulle's wines, this one has an astronmical meaning--the moon's Lilith is its farthest point from the earth, the apogee of its orbit. But astrologically, I like the interpretation better. The Lilith explores the more hidden and mysterious forms of the feminine archetype--independence, rebelliousness, pride, and strength. Look at the photo of Emanuelle...I think I get it now.
You'll enjoy this remarkable wine upon its arrival here in May, but would be rewarded for another five years of storing in a proper cellar as well.