The University of Manchester Wine Club

February 3rd 2016

Call my Bluff! Tasting of Languedoc-Roussillon Wines

Presented by 34 wines, Altrincham 


Blanquette de Limoux, Blancs de Blanc-Brut, NV, 12.5% £11.75
Produced from Mauzac grapes, with 5% added Chardonnay and Chenin, this pale yellow wine has a gentle mousse with a subtle floral bouquet; aromatic and balanced palate, it will develop brioche flavours with a little bottle age.

‘Call My Bluff’: each wine tasted was named and described by three presenters; we were then asked to decide the true identity of each wine with a prize for most correct identifications. 
True details of the wines were:

Wine 1
Épicerie de Castelnau Blanc, IGP Pays d’Oc, 2013, 12.5% £7.25
Principally the Colombard grape with a touch of Muscat to lift the bouquet, made by Beatrice and Christophe Muret at Castelnau-de-Guers near Pézenas in the Herault valley.  Pale straw, it has a grapey bouquet of citrus and exotic fruits.  The crisp, light-textured palate is fruity and continues the grapey/citrus theme.   An easy-drinking thirst quenching apéritif.

Wine 2
Picpoul de Pinet – Poul de Pic, AC Coteaux de Languedoc, 2013, 13.0% £8.95
The Picpoul grape is particular to this small coastal appellation in the Languedoc.  This example is made by Michel Moret about 5km from the coast and near to the Etang de Thau.  It is bright, pale straw in colour, the nose is complex, with aromas of citrus and white-fleshed fruit, perhaps pears.  The flavours are lively and fresh tasting, well balanced between acidity and fatness, combining lemon and flowers.  A well rounded wine, this is a really good aperitif and is excellent with oysters and mussels, which are raised in  the Etang de Thau, or grilled fish.

Wine 3
Château Montner Blanc Premium, AC Cotes du Rousillon, 2013, 14.5% £11.25
Produced by the Vignerons d’Agly Co-operative in Roussillon in the Agly valley east of Perpignan.  A blend of 50% Maccabeu, 30% Grenache Blanc and 20% Grenache Gris, all from old vines (between 20 and 40+ years old), the wine was barrel-fermented and aged in new oak.  Brilliant gold, the intense toasty bouquet is of white flowers with distinct mineral notes.  Fresh tasting, with well-balanced minerality and power, soft oak tones and a long finish.  Simply delicious, both on its own, and matched with creamy fish and chicken dishes.

Wine 4
Le Rosé du Cap - Petit Verdot Rosé, IGP Pays d’Oc, 2013, 13.0% £8.50
A powerful rosé from Domaine du Bosc, made principally from the Petit Verdot grape with just a touch of Syrah. The colour of crushed strawberries, this has a lovely creamy nose.  Off-dry on the palate, with strawberries and cream flavours and a hint of vanilla.  Delicious as an aperitif, it has the power to go well with creamy chicken or pork fillet.

Wine 5
Clos de Bijou, AC St.Chinian, 2012, 14.0% £9.95

Domaine du Météore, principally a  Faugères producer, have a small vineyard in the neighbouring appellation of St Chinian, the Clos de Bijou. The vines grow in very stony terrain where they struggle for sustenance and water. Half of this wine is Syrah with Grenache and Carignan in support.  Ruby red, it has an intense raspberry nose with liquorice tones, rich, full and plummy on the palate with soft tannins, a nice finish.

Wine 6
Chateau Martinolles – Garriguet, AOP Limoux, 2013, 14.0% £10.75
This is a blend of three of the “noble” grape varieties – Merlot (55%), Cabernet Sauvignon (15%) and Syrah (30%).  All the grapes are fermented together in large oak vats, and the wine is aged in a mixture of American and French oak barrels for 6 months.  The wine is a dense ruby red colour with a bouquet which is herby with vanilla, cigar-box & violet  notes.  On the palate there are lots of flavours of plum and cassis with soft integrated tannins and good 'grip'. The wine has good length and is an ideal accompaniment to winter meat dishes.

Wine 7
Patience, AC Coteaux du Languedoc, 2010, 13.5% £9.95
A Syrah:Grenache partnership from Madame Rouquette at Domaine des Tremiéres in the Hérault valley. Deep pinky red with aromas of violets and red fruits.  Soft tannins make for a smooth wine with characteristic pepper and spice from the Syrah with a long finish. This has lovely balance, and will complement red meats, game and cheese.

Wine 8 
Les Perséides, AC Faugeres,  2009, 14.0% £15.25
This blend from Domaine du Meteore is made from 65% Syrah and 35% Mourvèdre.  Aged for 18 months in new oak, deep red, with a bouquet of herbs, fruit and spice.  The palate is very smooth with intense fruit, big tannins and a long finish.  Decant before serving, will go well with rib of beef, duck breast, game, or wild boar.

34 Wines, Altrincham: