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All wine, most of the time

Octavin and Gahier tasting (3/4): Trousseaus

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Vin de France 2012, Corvée de Trousseau, Domaine de l’Octavin ($32.83, Les Importations du Moine, 6 bottles/case)
100% organically and biodynamically farmed Trousseau from the Les Corvées vineyard (and maybe other parcels). The whole grapes are vinified using carbonic maceration. The wine is denied Arbois AOC status because the alcohol level, 9.7% ABV, does not reach the required minimum (10%). “Boire du trousseau, ce n’est jamais une corvée” (Drinking Trousseau is never a chore) is written on the label.
I’ve seen darker rosés, though few as murky. Kaleidoscopic nose of cedar, “pale red tomato,” banana peel, red grapefruit, rhubarb and more. Faint carbon dioxide prickle. Light-bodied is putting it too strongly: the fruit is diaphanous, almost rainwatery (“eau de gazpacho” was how one taster described it) and yet the wine has the wherewithal to stand up to dried sausage, which brings out its fruit and makes you appreciate its mineral and acid backbone, dryness and length. A watercolour of a wine, quite unlike anything else I’ve encountered. (Buy again? At $23, I’d jump on it. At $33, a single bottle will have to do.)

Arbois 2011, Zerlina, Domaine de l’Octavin ($35.52, Les Importations du Moine, 6 bottles/case)
Biodyanmically and organically farmed Trousseau (50%) and Pinot Noir (50%) from the En Curon vineyard. 12% ABV.
Red berries with a hint of rubber and spice. Light- to medium-bodied, dry and silky textured. Clean on the attack, lightly structured and brightly lit. The fruit is ripe and fleet, shaded with earthier flavours. A lingering astringency and fine minerality colour the finish. (Buy again? Yes, with only a little grumbling about the price.)

Arbois 2011, Trousseau, Les Grands Vergers, Domaine Michel Gahier ($31.50, Primavin, NLA)
Les Grands Vergers is the lieu-dit (named place) where the 60- to 70-year-old vines for this 100% Trousseau are grown. (The area around Gahier’s village, Montigny-les-Arsures, is considered the homeland of Trousseau.) 12.5% ABV.
Perfumy red fruit with a few black currants thrown in, faint cinnamon, old wood and smoke. Medium-bodied. There’s a freshness and a bell-like clarity to the fruit, a hallmark of all the Gahier wines. Structured with fine, firm tannins, tensed with acidity, grounded in minerals and earth that last well into the finish. A beauty. (Buy again? Yes, in multiples with no grumbling whatsoever.)

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Written by carswell

June 1, 2014 at 11:35

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