Today we feature three lovely reds, including a bargain Pinot Noir from the Ardeche of all places. Not too far away from the Ardeche, comes the “poetic” La Cantilene from the little La Liviniere appellation in Minervois. And then a dash across Provence and into Italy for Mary Pawle’s soft and gorgeous Valpolicella import.
La Boussole Pinot Noir Les Grandes Cotes (Pays D’Oc, IGP) 2014, 12.5%, €13.45 Le Caveau
Colour is a bright ruby and the aromas feature strawberries. It is medium bodied, smooth and juicy. Light fruit flavours much in evidence as is a lively acidity, a little spice and an excellent fruity finish. Very Highly Recommended and great value too.
Winemaker Claude Serra employs, among other things, low yields and “a ruthless approach to quality control” to ensure a wine that reflects the variety and its terroir. And that terroir is in the Ardeche region of western Provence. The fact that it’s a cool-ish area helps the Pinot Noir.
By the way, if you ever have the good luck to be in the area, try the clafoutis! And try everything else as well. All with a glass or two of this Pinot, a very good food wine. Bon Appetit!
Chateau Sainte-Eulalie “La Cantilene” Minervois La Liviniere (AOC) 2013, 14%, €22.50 Karwig Wines
“Eulalie was a good girl
She had a beautiful body, a soul more beautiful still.
The enemies of God wanted to overcome her,
They wanted to make her serve the devil.”
From the heart of the Minervois, from an area called La Liviniere, Karwig Wines in Carrigaline bring you this superb red, a blend of Syrah (55%), Grenache (20) and Carignan (25). La Cantilene (881 AD) is the first romanesque poetic work, stanza above.
Close to Canal du Midi, north east of Carcassonne, north west of Beziers, Laurent and Isabelle Coustal run “an outstanding estate” and are one of the leading producers, respecting nature including the environment. For instance, their 2006 warehouse has its temperature controlled by a geothermal system rather than an energy hungry air conditioner.
La Cantilene has dark fruit aromas, notes of toast. Warm fruit flavours, vanilla notes, some spice too, fine tannins and a decent finish too from this full and rich wine. Recommended for game, grilled red meat and cheese. And the wine itself is Highly Recommended.
The wine area La Liviniere has a reputation for producing some of the finest red wines of the region. Read more here.
Fasoli Gino La Corte del Pozzo, Valpolicella (DOC) 2014, 14%, €20.20 Mary Pawle Wines
Corvina and Rondinella, often seen in the Amarone blend, are the grapes in this vibrant red. And indeed, a portion of these grapes is dried for 15-20 days ‘to increase the proportion of sugar and aromatic contents”. Ten to twelve months later, the two portions are blended. Harvesting is by hand and it is Vino Biologico (organic). Highly Recommended.
It is a bright ruby. It has red fruit aromas plus some vanilla. All follow through to the smooth and balanced, rich and soft, palate experience. Suggestions for pairing include: pasta, rice; also good with grilled red meats and medium mature cheeses.