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Gaillac 2011, Peyrouzelles, Causse Marines ($18.60, 00709931)
Organically farmed Syrah (35%), Duras (30%), Braucol (aka Fer, 25%) and Jurançon Noir (5%) from 15- to 20-year-old vines. Mechanically destemmed. Fermented with indigenous yeasts and macerated in temperature-controlled fiber vats for about two weeks. After a brief settling, the wine is racked into old barrels for maturation. 14% ABV.
A bit farty and sulphurous at first – probably due to the reduction-prone Duras though nothing 30 minutes in a carafe can’t take care of – then spicy red plum and blackberry with pencil shavings, turned earth, a whiff of red meat and a hint of flowers (distant lilac?). Medium-bodied if a little heady. Smooth, silky and very dry. Your first impression is that it’s fruitier than is actually the case. There’s fruit, of course, but it’s as savoury as sweet, riddled with acidity and plushed by tannins. Earth, wood and stone persist into the finish and leave faint sour, astringent, bitter and alcoholic notes bobbing in their wake. You’ll want to drink this lightly chilled, ideally alongside herby grilled pork or, once the cool weather returns, a confit duck leg, whose fat the acidity will cut like a scalpel. (Buy again? For sure.)

Written by carswell

August 2, 2013 at 12:58

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