Tessellae Carignan Vieilles Vignes Côtes Catalanes 2011

Carignan is widely looked down upon in France and abroad, with the Oxford Companion of Wine (3rd Ed) describing it as:

“Its wine is high in everything – acidity, tannins, colour, bitterness – but finesse and charm.  This gives it the double inconvenience of being unsuitable for early consumption yet unworthy of maturation.”

Who could resist purchasing a bottle of carignan with that in mind?  This particular wine, a 100% carignan, is from the Côtes Catalanes IGP.  IGP means indication géographique protégée and is the term that is replacing vin de pays under French/EU wine law.  Basically the wine is from the Roussillon region in the far south of France.  It’s a deep intensity purple in colour, and has aromatics of spirit, violets, spice, red meat, blackberry and some volatile acidity.  The palate is dry, full bodied and has a rustic expression of deli meats, spice, blackberry and a bitter finish.  On the whole, it’s certainly better than expected, although most certainly rustic and probably a little over the odds at this price.  Acceptable to Good

Abv: 14.5%
Price: $30
Vendors: Check http://www.wine-searcher.com/
Website: n/a
Region: Côtes Catalanes IGP

Source: Google Maps

Drink with: rare meat
Tasted: 2013
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