Cassis: Clos Sainte Magdeleine Blanc 2018
"This is lively, with bright black cherry and blackberry coulis flavors racing along, lined with a fresh sanguine note and backed by a minerally edge on the finish. A flash of bay leaf in the background adds range. Drink now through 2030. 93/100."
Jancis Robinson OBE, MW - JancisRobinson.com
This Cassis Blanc is the ultimate seafood partner, produced from grapes grown on the slopes of France's highest sea cliff, the Cap Canaille. Sublime scenery and wondrous wine.
Famille Sack's Art Deco Château is beautifully situated au bord de la mer, on the outskirts of the pretty fishing village of Cassis. We can only forgive François and his son Jonathan this idyllic existence because they craft the delicious Clos Sainte Magdeleine Cassis white from a unusual blend of Marsanne, Clairette and Ugni Blanc.
Aromas of wild herbs and a whiff of Provençal pine precede an alluring citrus palate, with an attractive, slightly-oily finish. To date, we have yet to find a better wine match for the local fish, Rascasse.
|Style||White Wine, Sec, Light-bodied, Non Sparkling|
|Wine Region||Provence, Cassis|
|Grape Variety (Cépage)||Clairette, Marsanne, Ugni Blanc|
|Food & Wine Matching||Seafood, White Fish|
|Cellarage||Approachable from bottling, this wine can be cellared for a decade.|
|Vinification||Lowish yields of grapes are hand harvested, de-stalked and fermented in stainless steel before fining, filtration and bottling the following year.|
|Alcohol By Volume (%)||12.5|
Clos Sainte Magdeleine (François Sack)
A stunning fishing port on the Mediterranean, Cassis is home to 14 producers who cultivate 180 hectares of vines in an appellation which is gradually shrinking due to real estate encroachment. Clos Sainte Magdeleine has belonged to the family of Madame Sack (née Zafiropulo) since 1922 and the headquarters of this 20 hectare estate is an impressive art-deco mansion lying just below the Cap Canaille (France's tallest coastal cliff). François Sack and his son Jonathan (who is now President of AOC Cassis) are the first to admit their good fortune but still retain a sense of perspective, often being seen carrying out local deliveries by scooter which is the only way to access the crowded quayside in the summer season.
The vast majority of Cassis' production is consumed locally and out-of-doors but it would erroneous to assume that the wines of Cassis are simply for quaffing on holiday. The main emphasis here is on dry white wine of which Clos Sainte Magdeleine's is amongst the very best. This small, prestigious family-run estate also produces a fine and elegant rosé.
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