Class. The Languedoc is one of the world’s oldest winegrowing regions, tracing its history back to 125 BC. For many years it has been known for abundant, cheap, and largely uninteresting wine, but in the past few years the region has seen a renaissance. There is a new wave of small scale winemakers, many committed to low-intervention, “natural” styles of winemaking. Our clear favorites in this category are the winemakers of the Mas Foulaquier.
Foulaquier’s vineyards embody the polyculture at the heart of their farming philosophy. The rows of vines are full of flowers, insects, and wild herbs — they even let a herd of nubian goats roam through the vines, trimming back the grass and fertilizing the soil. It’s Eden on a sunny hillside in southern France.
Complex. And what do the wines taste like? In a word, they’re extraordinary. No other winemaker we work with produces wines of such varied complexity and depth. The wines mix perfectly ripe, juicy notes of raspberry, cherries, violets, and roses with earthy notes of spice, lavender, garrigue and leather. There’s more going on in a glass of Foulaquier than nearly any other wine we know.
The Gran’Tonillieres is Foulaquier’s flagship wine – made from 60 year old vines of Grenache and Carignan, it shows extraordinary complexity but with elegance and grace. Raspberries appear on the label, and they are an apt hint of what’s inside. The wine is too complex to name (or know) all the notes, but highlights include leather, earth, and rosemary.
If you’re at all interested in the “natural” wine movement, this is a delicious first one to try. We can’t promise all the others will be this good, but we’re pretty sure you’ll like this one.
Foulaquier Gran’T 2011
Ansonia Retail: $38
6+ bottle price : $32/bot
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