New $22 Syrah Blend: Wild Lavender and Blackberry Jam

The south of France is a warm place. The grapes grown there are adapted to the heat, but achieving balance in a hot climate can still be difficult. If grapes become overripe, they contain too much sugar and too little acid, which boosts alcohol levels and flattens the palate.

All of which makes us awfully glad to have the Clos Bagatelle in our portfolio. Located in the bright, sunny Languedoc, Bagatelle’s wines nevertheless achieve a consistent balance, year after year. Their secret to freshness is their vineyards’ schist-laden soils and high elevation, which deliver refreshing minerality and cool nights throughout the summer.

Today we’re releasing Bagatelle’s 2016 “Au Fil de Soi,” certainly the best vintage of this wine we’ve had.

Clos Bagatelle is a centuries-old domaine in St. Chinian, a mountainous section of the northwestern Languedoc. A blend of syrah, grenache, mouvrèdre and cinsault, “Fil de Soi” is a delicious, vibrant blend that’s at once concentrated and rich, but smooth and balanced.

We found the 2016 St-Chinian “Au Fil de Soi” a definite step up from the 2015. It’s cool and delightful — at 13.5% alcohol it retains freshness, and at $22 it’s a bargain. Look for blueberry pie and earth in the nose. The mouth is long and full, with smooth tannins and notes of lavender, thyme, honey, and pepper.

Serve this a bit cooler than room temperature — it’s a rich southern wine that’s perfect for a weeknight dinner in.



Bagatelle St-Chinian “Fil de Soi” 2016
bottle price: $22

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