We Love - Pic Saint-Loup: 'L'Arbouse' Mas Bruguière 2020
"This is an extraordinary treat." - Matthew Jukes, Money Week.
Scenically wedged between the dramatic escarpments of Pic Saint-Loup (658m) and L'Hortus (512m,) 20km north of Montpellier, the 11-hectare estate of Mas Bruguière is intelligently run by seventh-generation vignerons Xavier and Majorie Bruguière. Taking over from his father Guilhem in the early 2000s, Xavier converted the domaine to organic status (2008) and halved the vineyard area in order to concentrate his attentions on older vines that were better suited to drier summers. The Cru of Pic Saint-Loup was finally recognised as an AOC in its own right in 2016, covering a total of 1,300 hectares and 58 wineries. All these qualitative milestones have put upwards pressure on prices and, throw in a calamitous hailstorm in August 2016, a year of drought in 2017 and 40% lost to frost in 2021, PSL is no longer the petit prix of yore. Nevertheless, as a benchmark of consistency and indication of the qualitative heights to which Languedoc reds can aspire, these wines excel.
"Pic St-Loup: Lean, clean, fragrant, vital and fresh: it's the track athlete of the Languedoc."
Andrew Jefford, Decanter.com
Mas Bruguière's elevated position in the picturesque Combe de Fombetu particularly benefits the cultivation of fresh, aromatic Syrah on north-facing clay-marl vineyards below the Pic, while also allowing Grenache and Mourvèdre to flourish on the warmer limestone slopes of south-facing L'Hortus Their main red wine 'L'Arbouse', named after the scrub strawberry tree that flourishes amongst the local garrigue, is an appealing blend of 50% Syrah (aged in large wooden vats) and equal parts Grenache and Mourvèdre (separately vinified in concrete tanks). The 2020 vintage is drinking beautifully on its fruit now, but would happily cellar for five years, especially in magnums. Food matching recomendations from Xavier & Marjorie are mouth-watering - joue de boeuf mijotée aux carottes, poulet basquaise, lapin aux pruneaux, magret de canard aux cerises.
Matthew Jukes, writing for Money Week recently, gave this wine the following enthusiastic 'Buy' recommendation:
"I have been following this estate for over 30 years, and I have never enjoyed anything other than a stunning experience when I uncork a bottle; this is true of the new 2020 vintage. A lusty, voluptuous Syrah / Grenache, this is a velvety number with luscious wild herb details over a deep, inky black, super-smooth core. What's even more gripping is that there is hardly a whisper of tannin to interrupt the irrepressible flow of fruit. This is an extraordinary treat."
This offer case contains either twelve bottles or six magnums of:
Pic Saint-Loup: Mas Bruguière 'l'Arbouse' 2020