Brett happens

All wine, most of the time

Octavin and Gahier tasting (2/4): Poulsards

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Arbois 2011, Cul Rond à la cuisse rose, Domaine de l’Octavin ($27.54, Les Importations du Moine, 6 bottles/case)
100% organically and biodynamically farmed Poulsard from the En Curon vineyard. Immediately after the grapes are crushed, the skins are removed to avoid colouring the juice (which, like that from nearly all red grapes, is clear); in other words, this is a blanc de noirs (assuming you’d call the pale Poulsard a black grape, that is). 11% ABV.
Muted, yeasty, sweaty nose that required coaxing to reveal the rumoured stone fruit. A bit spritzy on opening, which may explain the nose. Medium-bodied, possessed of a relatively dense, heading toward waxy texture. There’s an appealing tartness and a cider-like quality to the fruit. The finish is long and mineral-packed. Should probably be carafed an hour before opening. (Buy again? Sure.)

Arbois 2012, Dorabella, Domaine de l’Octavin ($31.27, Les Importations du Moine, 6 bottles/case)
100% organically and biodyanmically farmed Poulsard from 50-year-old vines from the La Mailloche vineyard plus a little form the En Curon vineyard. Vinified using carbonic maceration, like many Beaujolais. 11% ABV.
Pale red, the colour locals term rubis. Fruity, yeasty, cedary, tomatoey nose with a whiff of stinky feet. Light-bodied with lowish acid. The discreet fruit is marked by meaty, bloody and spicy notes. There’s also a bit of fizz, which may be intentional. A little disappointing compared with the disarmingly charming 2011 tasted last November but quite possibly in need of a few months to find its footing. (Buy again? A bottle to see how it evolves.)

Arbois 2012, Ploussard, Domaine Michel Gahier ($25.00, Primavin, NLA)
100% Poulsard (aka Ploussard) from 50-year-old vines in various parcels around Montigny-les-Arsures. 12.5% ABV.
Medium red. Raspberry (a bit candied), sweet spice, quartz and blossoms (musk rose and violet?). Medium-bodied. Iron and light red fruit are the dominant flavours (“blood on white strawberries” quoth one taster), while acidity streams and tannins lightly rasp. Decent length and a lingering tang. A textbook example of the grape and an excellent pairing for charcuterie. (Buy again? Yes.)

Written by carswell

May 30, 2014 at 17:38

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