Tag: France

Paul Blanck Schlossberg Grand Cru Alsace Riesling 2011

Schlossberg is an 80 hectare grand cru in Alsace that is situated eight kilometres from Colmar, overlooking the Weiss Valley.  The Vins Alsace website actually has a lot of further information, including some very cool interactive maps that highlight the region’s stunning beauty.  You can find it here.  This wine from Paul Blanck is a very good wine.  A yellow gold in colour, it has aromas of lemon and touch of honey.  The palate is rich and mostly dry, with flavours reminding of lemon, stones and tropical fruit, supplemented by fresh acidity and long length on palate.  Ready to drink now, this wine can be approached over the next decade or more.  Rating: Very Good. Abv: not recorded. Price: $60. Website: www.blanck.com/en/

Château du Cèdre Héritage Cahors Malbec 2015

This is a good malbec from Cahors in south western France.  Less deeply coloured and fruity than its equivalents in Argentina, it has restrained aromas of red berries, earth, herbs and oak.  The palate is earthy and savoury, with liquorice overtones.  Some mid weight tannins and good length complete the picture.  This wine can be approached now and represents good value at this price.  Rating: Good. Abv: 13%. Price: $28. Website: https://www.chateauducedre.com

Triennes Rosé IGP Méditérranée 2017

The number and variety of Provençal rosés available in Australia seems to be increasing.  This is the best I have tried recently.  A blend of cinsault, grenache, syrah and merlot, it is from the Méditérranée  IGP region, which includes the Provence wine region in southern France.  The label was founded by some serious names, the founder of Domaine Dujac and Aubert de Villaine.  In the glass, the wine has salt, mineral and floral overtones.  The palate has good and refreshing acidity.  This wine is recommended.  Rating: Good. Abv: 12.5%. Price: $20. Website: www.triennes.com.

Artea Alpes de Haute Provence Rosé 2016

This Provençal rose (from the Alpes de Haute Provence IGP in France) is so pale it almost resembles a white wine in colour.  Grape varieties are not specified.  However, this region is known for grenache, syrah and cinsault blends, so this is presumed.  Its aromatics remind of gentle florals.  The palate is flavoursome with nectarine notes and fresh acidity.  A pleasant rose for immediate consumption.  Rating: Good. Abv: 13%. Price: $20+. 

Domaine Gayda Figure Libre Freestyle Vin de Pays d’Oc 2015

The picture shows the 2016 vintage.  The 2015 vintage is reviewed here.

This is another interesting Vin de Pays d’Oc from the south of France.  Organically grown, it is a blend of 40% syrah, 40% grenache, 10% carignan and 10% mourvèdre sourced variously from Roussillon, Corbières and La Livinière and is a deep purple in the glass.  The wine opens to aromatics of pepper and spice, but mostly spice.  The underlying fruit is ripe, fresh and fruity.  The palate is full bodied and the length and savoury balance satisfying.   Rating: Good. Abv: 14%. Price: N/A. Source: Sample.

François Chidaine Touraine Sauvignon 2015

I wasn’t entirely convinced by this sauvignon blanc from François Chidaine in Touraine. It opens to a typically sauvignon blanc tropical aroma, but overlaid with a green streak. The palate is medium bodied with a bitter edge.  Neither Sancerre, nor NZ in styling, it presented as an amalgam of the two.  Rating: Acceptable to Good. Abv: N/A. Price: $20s.

Pascal Marchand-Tawse Bourgogne Rouge 2015

This is a very moreish Bourgogne from Pascal Marchand. From the highly regarded 2015 vintage, it is a good example of a Bourgogne rouge, if expensive. In the glass, it is faintly meaty, with raspberry notes. The palate is fleshy, medium bodied and with enough flavour and acidity to both resolutely signal Burgundy and interest. Rating: Good. Abv: 13%. Price: $50s.

Thierry Germain Cep by Cep Anjou Rouge 2015

A second wine review from Thierry Germain Cep by Cep in the Loire Valley. This wine is an Anjou rouge, which is an organically tended 100% cabernet franc. Alas, the words “cabernet franc” do not appear on the front label like Thierry Germain’s chenin blanc.  I have not found this style of cabernet franc being made in Australia.  The 2015 vintage tasted here is all raspberries, strawberries, medium bodied and with a crisp smokey/twiggy fruit overlay.  This is recommended and lovely current drinking and a typical expression of Loire cab franc.  The vintage shown on the label photo is the 2014 vintage.  Rating: Good. Abv: 12.5%. Price: $30.

Thierry Germain Cep by Cep Anjou Chenin Blanc 2016

This is a delicious Anjou blanc from Thierry Germain in the Loire Valley. The label is simple too – “Anjou blanc” needs to be at least 80% chenin blanc and many French producers leave it at the former regional description. This label helpfully states that’s what’s in it – i.e. chenin blanc. It has aromas of lemon, wool and yeast. The palate is very refreshing with high acidity and a yellow grapefruit expression. It calls out for seafood. Rating: Good. Abv: 12%. Price: $28.

Bernard Defaix AOC Chablis 2015

This is a delicious AOC Chablis from Bernard Defaix. From the 2015 vintage, it has aromatics of lemon, shells and stones. The palate is fresh and linear with no oak evident. The acidity is linear without being hard. Chardonnay is almost a different grape variety when grown in Chablis and presented in this style. A good example of terroir. More please. Rating: Good. Abv: 12.5%. Price: $25.