Vin de France: Domaine de Montcalmès Chenin Blanc 2020

Produced in tiny quantities, Frédéric Pourtalie at Domaine de Montcalmès makes this crisp, dry white Chenin Blanc wine from limestone soils around the village of Puéchabon. With ripe stone fruit aromas, a golden robe, green apple acidity and an expressive floral bouquet, it has vanilla and spice notes underlined by an elegant minerality leading to a wonderful final honeyed lift on the finish. Certified organic.

Bottle (Case)
Tasting Notes

From lower-yielding organically-farmed 30 year-old vines (average) sited around the commune of Puéchabon in the Terrasses du Larzac. Yields are around 20-25 hectolitres per hectare.

About this wine
StyleWhite Wine, Sec, Full-bodied, Non Sparkling
Wine RegionLanguedoc, Terrasses du Larzac
Grape Variety (Cépage)Chenin Blanc
Food & Wine MatchingChicken and Turkey, Goat's Cheese, Oysters, White Fish
CellarageDrink 5 to 10 years after vintage.
VinificationDestemmed before a gentle pressing then settled for 24 to 48 hours before fermentation using wild yeasts. Aged in barriques and demi-muids for 24 months. Different parcels are blended 4 to 6 months before bottling (unfiltered) under a waning moon.
Alcohol By Volume (%)13.5

Domaine de Montcalmès

After extensive training with Alain Graillot in Crozes-Hermitage, the Alary family (L'Oratoire St. Martin) and Olivier Jullien at nearby Mas Jullien, ex-coopérateur Frédéric Pourtalié and his father decided to bring wine production in-house in 1998. The family vines lie in the hamlet of Montcalmès - some 30km north-west of Montpellier – in the Cévennes National Park. The surrounding mountains create a unique microclimate on the limestone-clay plateau with cool summer nights and good wind movement allowing grapes to mature slowly and steadily despite searing daytime temperatures.

At the turn of the century, the Terrasses du Larzac was relatively unknown in wine terms – with Mas de Daumas Gassac the notable local exception. Following in the footsteps of the Vaillé family at neighbouring iconic estate La Grange des Pères - with whom Frédéric trained – the area's profile has soared in recognition of the quality of wine being produced there.

These days, Frédéric's vineholdings extend to some 22 hectares covering a number of Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée, IGP and Vin de France designations across four communes - Puéchabon, Aniane, St. Jean de Fos and St. Saturnin de Lucian. Syrah and Grenache vines are planted on north-facing limestone soils, while Mourvèdre faces south on pudding stones and clay (galets roulés). Roussanne, Marsanne, Chenin Blanc, Viognier and Chardonnay are also planted on limestone parcels making white blends and single-varietal bottlings. The estate was certified organic from the 2015 vintage.


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