Olivier Coste Carignan Blanc Rare 2020
A wonderfully fresh and aromatic expression of this rare grape variety, with vibrant citrus fruit layered with hints of melon and flint with a lovely salinity on the finish.
Producer Note - Since his childhood, Olivier Coste's favourite place to play was in the vineyards and the wine cellar at his family’s wine estate, which was founded in 1701 in Pézenas. With this upbringing, he developed a passion for nature, the Languedoc region and southern French wines. The vineyards are located a few kilometres from Pézenas where the Mediterranean Sea asserts its influence on the vines. The estate is certified HVE3, which complements the family’s existing ‘Carbon Neutral’ approach. They reduce their CO2 emissions, keeping them to a minimum and offset the rest by financing ecological initiatives, including projects in India. Olivier’s (OC) original Stars range has been created for those who appreciate a modern, fresh and fruity varietal wine and is complemented by quirky packaging.
Vintage - 2020 was a vintage filled with excellent weather conditions. The dry and mild winter was compensated for by a very rainy spring, which replenished water reserves and facilitated flowering and fruit development. The warm and dry summer, followed by good weather during harvest time allowed for superb maturation of the fruit.
Vineyard - Made from 100% Carignan Blanc, a rare Mediterranean variety of which there are only 250 hectares remaining, mostly in the Languedoc region. Carignan Blanc does not feature as the main variety in any of the major appellation laws and is therefore labelled as Vin de France. This cuvée is produced from 70-year old vines that are cultivated in a two-hectare plot by the sea in Castelnau-de-Guers. The cooling influence of the coastal breezes enhances the freshness of this naturally high acidity variety and balances the rich, concentrated flavours from this warm and sunny Mediterranean climate. The Gobelet vines are pruned according to the traditional Mediterranean bush method, which allows the shade from the leaves to protect the grapes from the sun. The old vines yield 60 hectolitres per hectare; the yields are not overly restricted in order to avoid heaviness and weight in the resulting wine. The vines are grown in limestone-rich soils, which contribute to the elegance of the cuvée and the grapes are harvested during the cool of the night, to retain freshness.
Winemaking - The grapes were carefully selected and 100% destemmed before pre-fermentation maceration took place for 24 hours. The grapes were gently pressed and the must was fermented with selected yeasts at low temperatures, in stainless steel tanks to promote freshness and aromatic expression. The wine was then matured in stainless steel tanks without the influence of oak.
Tasting Note - A wonderfully fresh and aromatic expression of this rare grape variety. Floral and fruity aromas lead to a crisp, fresh palate where the vibrant citrus fruit is layered with hints of almond and flinty minerality.
Grape Carignan Blanc 100%
Awards 16 pts, Jancis Robinson, 2021
Winemaker: Olivier Coste
Region: Vin de France
Dry/Sweet value: 1 (1 is dry, 7 is very sweet)
Contains Sulphites: Yes