Brett happens

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Three in one

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Maxime and Sophie Barmès of Domaine Barmès Buecher and Giusto Occhipinti from Azienda Agricola COS were in Montreal last April and our friends at oneopole generously hosted a dozen Mo’ Wine Group members at a tasting at their world headquarters. oenopole brought the wine and the three visitors and we brought the food.

After his father François died in a cycling accident in the fall of 2011, twenty-something Maxime returned from school to oversee, assisted by his mother Geneviève, the winemaking for the just-completed harvest. He has stayed on as winemaker while Sophie, who obtained a management degree in 2010, looks after the business side of things.

Farming and winemaking follow the practices established by Francois soon after he took over the estate: manually working the vines and soil; abjuring herbicides, insecticides, fungicides and synthetic fertilizers; using only plant-based treatments; strictly sorting the grapes on the vine and at the cellar; pressing gently; adding nothing and taking nothing away. The results are there for the tasting.

We began with an easy-drinking blend made exclusively for the Quebec market.

Alsace 2011, Trilogie, Domaine Barmès Buecher ($19.95, 12254420)
A blend of organically and biodynamically farmed Pinot Blanc (40%), Riesling (40%) and Pinot Gris (20%). Manually harvested. Whole-cluster pressed. Fermented with indigenous yeasts. Matured 12 months on the fine lees in stainless steel tanks. Unfiltered and unfined. Sulphur is added – and then minimally – only at bottling. Reducing sugar: 6.9 g/l. 12.5% ABV. Quebec agent: oenopole.
Quiet nose of chalk, white peach and pineapple with coriander and fennel seed hints. In the mouth, the wine is bright and clean, as aromatic as it is flavourful. A touch of residual sugar rounds and adds sheen. The remarkably pure fruit is infused with white minerals, while an intriguing acid bite appears on the mid-palate and a faint bitterness marks the long finish. Uncomplicated (which is not to say shallow), fresh and appetizing, this has QPR winner written all over it. Perfect for sipping on its own or serving with seafood in Asian-style preparations. (Buy again? Imperatively. Here’s hoping there’s a second shipment.)

MWG April 14th tasting: flight 1 of 6.

Written by carswell

June 4, 2015 at 13:05

2 Responses

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  1. […] background on the winemaker and my tasting note from last November). Second, a restocking of the irresistible Alsace 2011, Trilogie, Domaine Barmès Buecher ($19.95, […]

    Going live | Brett happens

    August 11, 2015 at 12:15

  2. […] second half of the April 14th tasting was led by Giusto Occhipinti, one of the two partners of Azienda Agricola COS. Giusto’s last name […]

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