Marvels of Moulis

Marvels of Moulis
Moulis is not the first name that trips off the tongue when you are asked about Bordeaux. It is indeed the smallest appellation in the area but that doesn't prevent it from producing some very fine wines. I got to know the little village fairly well this summer, driving up and down the street quite a few times in a vain attempt to find the region’s Maison du Vin (closed down, methinks).

If you’d like to try a wine from Moulis, you could well be in luck as my search on revealed that both wines below (maybe not the exact year) are available in Ireland. If you do get your hands on the 2006 Brillette, decant and make sure it is at room temperature before pouring.

L’Oratoire de Chasse Spleen, Moulis 2011, 13%

Chasse Spleen, according to Hugh Johnson, is “one of the surest things in Bordeaux” and the current edition of the Wine Atlas says “it can be viewed as an honorary St Julien for  its smoothness, its accessibility”. High praise indeed for the chateau with the unusual name, sometimes credited to Baudelaire, sometimes to Byron.

This is a second wine of the estate. Cabernet Sauvignon (50%) and Merlot (40) are the main players in the blend. The chateau says the Cab Sauv helps make it fresh and velvety while the Merlot is credited with giving it opulence and smoothness.

But I've been told forget the label: “Listen to your palate”. So here goes. The wine is a brilliant medium red with fruit aromas, including plum, some mint and pepper. On the palate, there is no shortage of fruit flavours; fine tannins are present but nothing too gripping. This is a fresh well-made well-balanced wine with a persistent finalĂ©. Wouldn’t mind renewing acquaintance with it in a few years time.
Chateau Brillette, Comte de Perier de Larsan, Moulis 2006, 13.5%

This wine, a blend of Merlot (52%), Cabernet Sauvignon (40) and Petit Verdot (8), comes well recommended. A Jancis Robinson tasting gave it 16 out of 20 which equates to “distinguished”. She also advised drinking it between 2012 and 2018. Guess I got that right!

This is a dark rich red, lighter towards the rim, and it has complex fruit aromas (mainly plum, for me). Rounded fruit flavours on the palate, generous with notes of pepper and wood, soft tannins and good acidity. Decent enough finish as well. Think I’d be happy to agree with the rating by Jancis!