One of the great icon wines of Languedoc, the Guilhem Gaucelm is made from roughly equal proportions of old vines Grenache and Syrah grown on the southern flank of the Pic Saint Loup mountain. This wonderful wine is deeply ruby tinted with the odd garnet fleck. The complex nose is rich and full of red and dark berry fruits including strawberry, blackberry, raspberry, mulberry, with black cherry and hints of black olive with much spice including mace, cinnamon, eucalyptus and other Garrigues herbs. Development of tertiary aromas is also evident, with some lovely balsamic and gravy notes. The palate is balanced and very long, with more of that development, particularly balsamic, gravy, meaty earthy mushroom, along with the complex fruit, notably raspberry, strawberry, dark plum, tapenade, sweet spices, a touch of eucalyptus and a hint of vanilla on the finish. The tannins are ripe and soft with a lovely silky texture.
Because this wine was made without addition of Sulphur dioxide there is likely to be variation between bottles, with some showing more development than others
Maturity: despite being lovely to drink now, it will improve over at least twomore years, and then drink at peak for perhaps another five.
Food: Perfect for richer dark meat dishes, perhaps a roast rib of beef, or venison in a prune and chocolate sauce, Tournedos Rossini, or Boeuf-en-croute. It is more difficult to match to vegetarian food, but it will be superb with some stronger cow’s milk cheeses.
Alcohol: 14% (though it does not show as the wine is so well balanced)
Varieties: 50% Grenache Noir (vines over 80 years old)
50% Syrah (vines over 40 years old)
Yields: 10 – 20 hl/ha
- The Syrah vines are approximately 40 years old, trained cordon de royat; they are grown on limestone with a little clay and many large river stones to a depth of 6m. The Grenache vines are all over 80 years old and trained as goblet.
Hand picked grapes are sorted and destemed with the Grenache and Syrah co-fermented in a wide stainless steel cuve
2 – 3 days cold maceration is followed by 21+ days fermentation at 26 – 28 degrees, with pigeage one to four times a day, dependent on the speed of fermentation, the level of extraction, the development of the wine and with respect to the lunar cycles
Aged in oak barriques, of which 20% are new, for 21 months before bottling
Less than 2000 bottles were produced in 2005
No sulphur dioxide was used in making or bottling this wine
Biodynamic principles are followed in all aspects of the work in the vineyards and cellar on this domain.
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