Summer 2020 CRUx6 Quarterly Reds
I wanted to deal with this tariff mess as best as I could this quarter, and bring you some of our fan favorite red wines from France. In order to accomplish that, I needed to balance them with one from Catalonia, and one from Portugal. The French come from four distinct parts of the country--Bordeaux, Beaujolais, Languedoc, and Ventoux. Maybe these wines will virtually transport you to some kind of imaginary bar à vins in each of those places.
Here they are:
Clos de Mez Fleurie Mademoiselle M 2018--I wouldn't call this anything close to resembling the teeth-coating, slightly spritzy, cotton candy kinda Beaujolais that is dominating the market. Marie-Elodie Zighera's wines are always lively, finely-layered, and filled with finesse. I find this bottle to be made more like Pinot Noir, and less like tooty-fruity Beaujolais.
La Rose Vimière "Futs de Chene" Bordeaux Rouge 2016--Vincent Lagrave is a former rugbyman now farming exactly 1 hectare in Lalande de Pomerol, and in the process of renovating a building using his own homemade scaffolding--made from old pallets! Lagrave makes this lovely Bordeaux from a small holding on the other side of the street--just OUTSIDE the Pomerol appellation. It is Merlot and Cabernet Franc, raised in older barrels, at its succulent, lovely best.
Chateau de Brau Fer Servadou Languedoc 2018--There's a large range of wines at Brau, yet I would call this a small winery, as most of the bottlings comprise only a few thousand bottles each. At a recent tasting, I was most excited by this wine. Fer Servadou is a truly local grape, mostly used in the neighboring Marcillac appellation. Fer means "iron" in French, a possible testament to the strength in the wood, and for me because the wine has an almost meaty, iodine quality that screams "country!" Dark red color and a wild fruit salad of aromas and flavors. Neat stuff.
La Camarette Terroir AOP Ventoux 2017--I've been to Camarette three times in the last year. Why? You might think its about the wine, but I knew on visit #1 that we had a keeper in the bottle. But I return for the auberge, and specifically to eat the food of Nancy's husband, Hugues, while drinking her wine. There's no better country meal in the Ventoux. "Terroir" has been made just twice before, from the terrific 2011 and 2016 vintages. The stars aligned again this year and gave a wine that is powerful, complex, and complete.
Mas de l'Abundancia He-Ma Montsant 2019--An old friend back in the house.The Abundancia Montsant HE-MA 2019 is truly a Montsant without parallel. Offering this wine at $18is ridiculous. A recent bottle over pork chops and roasted potatoes was just perfect. A rich, complex, gutsy red offering with a deep saturated color.
Adega Monte Branco Alento Tinto Portugal 2018--The Adega Monte Branco is everything I love in the spirit of a young winemaker with energy, passion, and a determination to create something special and long lasting.We'll go back again and again to Monte Branco but for now maybe you'll settle for this wine, Luis' Alento Red, a veritable primer on Portugeuse grape varieties, and and a table setter for what's in store. I just love this plump, wild-fruited, opaque wine. The schiste soils give a haunting minerality, but the warm, dry sun of the Alentejo makes for a rich, succulent, saturated wine. A beautiful bottle to enjoy year round.
I hope you enjoy them all!