Eric Laguerre's high-altitude vines

Notable New Arrivals from the South of France!

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Poor timing perhaps, but we've just received some truly fascinating wines from the Languedoc/Roussillon as well as some beautiful biodynamic wines from Jurançon - one of our favorite of the lesser-known wine regions of France.

The Aurisset family in Cardesse (Jurançon) converted to organic farming in the 1990s and has been certified Biodynamic since 2007. They hand harvest in successive "tries" from October through the end of December, vinify with wild yeasts and age all their wines in old barriques purchased from Yquem and Haut-Brion. They produce a beautiful Jurançon Sec, three different Jurançon (Moelleux) and a lovely Béarn Rouge made from equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Tannat. We're delighted to offer their extraordinarily complex and affordable wines at Chambers Street.

Also in the mountains bordering Spain, but a few hundred miles to the east, Eric Laguerre tends his superb organic vineyards in the Roussillon. Unique in their very high elevation and the unusual granite soils, Eric's vineyards give distinctly southern wines that possess fresh acidity and pronounced mineral flavors. Recommended to us by Jean Gonon, the Le Ciste Blanc, produced from Grenache Blanc, Maccabeo, Vermentino, Marsanne and Roussanne, is perhaps Laguerre's most distinctive wine.

Thierry Navarre, the third generation at his estate in Saint-Chinian, is a true man of the earth, obviously happiest in his "office," that being his hillside vineyards high above Rocquebrun on brown schist soils. Organic vineyard work, natural composts and hand havesting by a small team of pickers. Thierry peserves "forgotten" varieties such as Oeillades, Ribeyrenc and Terret and has old vines of Carignan, Grenache and Syrah. His Cuvée Olivier, from his oldest vines, is particularly oustanding in the 2010 vintage.

Every winter Thierry drives up to "La Dive Bouteille," the natural wine show in Saumur, with his neighbors Anne-Marie and Pierre Lavaysse from le Petit Domaine de Gimios. The windswept high plateaus of Gimios are covered with crushed limestone and planted in ancient vines of Carignan, Terret, Aramon, Grenache, Alicante and Muscat, from which the domain produces dry and sweet Muscat, a sensational rosé and two unusual reds. The farming here is completely without chemical treatments, even the sulfur and copper solutions permitted in organic agriculture are not used. No additves or preservatives are used in the vinification, and yields are a miniscule 15 hl/ha. These are among the finest "natural" wines of France.

The newest additions to our Languedoc portfolio are the superb biodynamic wines of  Domaine de la Marfée in Murviel-les-Montpellier. Wines from this clay limestone terroir, known as "Saint-Georges d'Orgues," were famous in the middle ages and were imported to the US by Thomas Jefferson. Vigneron Thierry Hasard believes that the soil must be alive to fully express the terroir, thus he has been Biodynamic since 2003 and does minimal plowing to not disturb the underground flora and fauna. The reds are made from low-yielding vines of Mourvedre, Grenache and Syrah, and spend two years in old barriques before bottling with minimal sulfur. These are among the most elegant wines of the Languedoc and deserve your attention.

 

Navarre NV Vin de France Grenache Rosé Demi-Sec

This is a delicious vin doux naturel from Thierry Navarre made from very late-harvested Grenache. We imagine that it's a wine made the way wine used to be made all over the Languedoc before temperature control was an option. A bit sweet and somewhat sherry-like, the aromas are of prune and ripe cherry, with licorice and brown spice. Very long and nutty on the palate, perhaps the best way to imagine this wine is to think of an Oloroso sherry... then extrapolate! Absolutely delicious and a great accompaniment to chocolate, fruit tarts, dried fruits or simply by itself as an apéritif. Thanks to Thierry for finally making a label and shipping us some of this unique local specialty.

  • rosé off-dry
  • 9 in stock
  • no discount
  • $15.99

  • Organic
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Lapuyade 2010 Jurançon Gros Manseng

This "regular" cuvée of the Château Lapuyade Jurançon Moelleux is a blend of Gros Manseng and Petit Manseng grown in their beautiful biodynamic vineyards in Cardesse. A bit closed aromatically when opened (the wine benefits from decanting or a day or two re-corked in the fridge) then lovely aromas of orange, brown spice and flowers. Candied citrus on the palate with spice, almond and mineral flavors leading to a crisp finish with good acidity. Moderately sweet, the wine's good acidity make it pair beautifully with pâtés, cheeses and Asian foods, and of course it's a great apéritif. It's a fabulous value at $14.99!

  • Out of Stock
  • white medium-sweet
  • 0 in stock
  • $14.99

Lapuyade 2010 Jurançon Petit Manseng

Clos Marie-Louise/Château Lapuyade is a beautiful biodynamic estate deep in the hills of Jurançon, south of Pau. Their wines are harvested by hand, fermented with wild yeasts and aged in old barrels purchased from Yquem and Haut-Brion. Their 2010 Petit Manseng is a gorgeous wine and a sensational value. Deep floral honeyed apricot, citrus confit and caramel aromas with sweet fruit on the palate—lemon oil, exotic fruit and brown spice lifted by firm acidity. Terrific length. With a few days open, more exotic fruit, pineapple and lychee emerge and the wine softens into something wonderful. An outstanding Jurançon moelleux that will accompany fois gras, patés, cheeses, fruit desserts and is fabulous on its own. Highly recommended.

  • Out of Stock
  • white medium-sweet
  • 0 in stock
  • $21.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic

Lapuyade 2010 Jurançon Cuvée Marie-Louise

This is a superb Jurançon Moelleux, harvested in late December, about 85 grams/liter of residual sugar. Wonderfully complex aromas of apricot, candied citrus, flowers and exotic fruit with a hint of vanillin. Lemon confit, apricot, brown spice and chalky acids on the palate. A young wine that is gorgeous now but perhaps best in five to ten years. with more acidity than Sauternes, this is a great match for foie gras, lemon tarts and strong cheeses.

  • Out of Stock
  • white sweet
  • 0 in stock
  • $39.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic

Lapuyade 2009 Bearn Rouge ARRIVES 11/12

From 45 year-old Cabernet Franc and Tannat vines on this beautiful estate in the Jurancon region, certified Biodynamic. Aged in used barriques. Deep red/black color, meaty blackberry aromas, dense palate of black fruit liqueur. Not heavy, with nice acidity and balance, 12.5% alcohol. Really a delicious "country" wine! Needs to open up a bit, but quite a bargain at $11.99 — serve with duck, guinea hen, steak, strong cheeses. DL

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $11.99

Laguerre 2012 Côtes du Roussillon Eos Blanc

Eric Laguerre's EOS Blanc is terrific in 2012! From high-altitude vineyards in the Roussillon, 65% Grenache Blanc and 35% Maccabeo, harvested by hand into small baskets, with yields of 22 hl/ha, certified organic by Ecocert. Subtle, floral, pear, citrus and herbal aromas with an elegant, balanced palate of citrus, white fruits and mineral acidity. Really an elegant, refreshing and unique wine and a great price!

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $12.99

Laguerre 2011 Côtes du Roussillon Le Ciste Blanc

We're very happy to finally recieve the delicious Le Ciste Blanc from Eric Laguerre! Hidden away on slopes of decomposed granite high in the Cotes du Roussillon, Laguerre's vineyards are beautifully tended, fully organic and fenced to keep out the wild boars! The unique soils and high elevation combine with Eric's fabulous work to produce elegant, balanced wines with good acidity and great mineral character. The Ciste Blanc is a blend of Marsanne, Roussanne, Vermentino (Rolle), Grenache Blanc and Maccabeo. Remarkably elegant, it has bright citrus, floral and white fruit aromas. The palate shows the Roussanne with hay, lemon. herbal and soil flavors framed in crisp acids and minerals. Delicious now, this lovely wine will develop nicely for ten years. Highly recommended!

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $16.99

Laguerre 2011 Côtes du Roussillon Le Passage

This is a medium bodied red from wind swept high altitude organically farmed Carginan vines in the Roussillon. Aromas of crushed raspberries, violets, spice and prune with a touch of brambly character. Soft and juicy in the mid-palate, with a delicate finish. Eric Laguerre's vineyard work is fabulous and completely organic. This vineyard is at about 2,000 ft altitude with the Mediterranean barely visible in the distance. The wine is really delicious and a great value; thank you Eric!

 

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $13.99

Laguerre 2011 Côtes du Roussillon Eos Rouge

(80% Grenache, 20% Syrah grown on high-altitude slopes of decomposed granite. Hand-harvested in small crates, yields of 18 hl/ha) Bright aromas of tart cherry and strawberry, floral and very pure. The palate is dense but not heavy with cherry and red-currant fruit with acidity that coats the mouth. Very long finish for a wine at this price, quite elegant with nice tannic structure. This will go very well served cool with grilled meats and will benefit from short-term cellaring. An interesting wine that really shows the influence of the granite soils. On day two there is lovely red raspberry and the tannins have softened a bit, still with bright acidity and terrific length. A fabulous value!

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $13.99

Navarre 2012 Vin de Table de France Vin d'Oeillades Rosé

From beautiful organically tended vineyards of Oeillades, an old cousin of Cinsault, on mountainsides above Rocquebrun, the 2012 Rose is a refreshing treat, will lovely high-toned red fruits, blood orange and tea. Full-flavored but low in alcohol at 11.5% and with good acidity, it's a unique and food-friendly rose that will drink beautifully all year-round.

  • Out of Stock
  • rosé
  • 0 in stock
  • $11.99

Navarre 2012 Vin de Table de France Vin d'Oeillades

Oeillades is an old variety of Cinsault, rarely seen anymore in the Languedoc. Thierry Navarre, who is proud of his vineyards of "forgotton varieties," produces Terret and Ribeyrenc as well as this lovely light-bodied Oeillades. The 2012 has pretty high-toned red-currant and raspberry fruit, quite fresh and appealing. The palate has tart cherry and plum fruit, it's light to medium-bodied with refreshing acidity and good length. Good intensity of fruit but low alcohol, 11.5%, which makes it very food-friendly. Serve cool with charcuterie, white meats and cheeses. DL

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $8.99

Navarre 2010 Saint-Chinian Cuvée Olivier

2010 is a great vintage for Thierry Navarre's Cuvée Olivier, from his oldest vines of Grenache and Carignan grown in his mountainside vineyards in Saint-Chinian. Deep and very complex aromas of black raspberry and blueberry with hints of roast meats, espresso, violets, chocolate and citrus. Lovely palate of ripe red and black fruits, earth and citrus lifted by firm acidity. This is a beautiful Languedoc red — rich, ripe and complex and surprisingly "fresh" with good acidity and 13.5% alcohol. Organic farming, minimal sulfur. Highly recommended.

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $18.99

Petit Domaine de Gimios 2011 Vin de Table Petit Rose de Gimios

Gorgeous, giving, and quite a bit drier than the 2010 vintage.The aromatic allure of Petit Gimios is here in spades: rich kirsch, soft brambly mulberry, naval orange zest, cran-raspberry, and sweet sunny lemonade; the palate is full and clear, with sweet blackberry flesh, tart red plums, zippy mandarin orange and sweet ripe tomatoes complemented by accents of cool lavender, fresh oregano, subtle purple fruit skins, black licorice and pencil lead. A touch sweet, entirely unique, and very well-balanced. -AR (Biodynamic farming, no additives of any kind—a completely natural wine)

  • Out of Stock
  • rosé
  • 0 in stock
  • no discount
  • $18.99

Petit Domaine de Gimios 2012 Vin de Table Rouge Fruit

This is one of the most interesting and delicious "natural" wines from the south of France, from old vines of Carignan, Terret, Aramon, Grenache, Alicante and Muscat Petit Grain. Anne-Marie and Pierre Lavaysse make their wines with zero additives and farm without the sulfur and copper treatments that are used by most organic vineyards. The 2012 Rouge Fruit has complex aromas of fruit confit, violets, white pepper and spice with bright, spicy red fruits, citrus and mineral flavors on the palate. Brisk acidity with berry fruits and stone flavors linger in the finish. Delicious, totally unique and highly recommended to any lover of natural wines—or should we say "wines of nature?"

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • no discount
  • $17.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur

Marfée 2010 Languedoc - Grès Montpellier Les Gamines

50% Mourvèdre with Grenache and Syrah, certified organic, from small parcels in Murviel-lès-Montpellier, aged 2 years in used barriques. Elegant blackberry, cocoa, earth and herbal aromas. The palate is structured and balanced with blackberry, black plum and citrus flavors. Good length with firm acids, this opens up with a few hours of air, serve with a nice steak...

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • no discount
  • $11.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic

Marfée 2010 Languedoc St. Georges d'Orques Della Francesca

85% Mourvedre, AOC Languedoc — Saint Georges d'Orgues, biodynamic farming, aged two years in old barriques. This is a step up in elegance and complexity from the excellent "les Gamines" showing high-toned aromas of blackberry and red currant, with coffee and earth. Complex black and red fruits with floral notes, superb balance with lifting acidity, ripe tannins and good length. This will age nicely for five to ten years but is excellent now — serve with grilled meats, stews and full-flavored cheeses. Bravo to Thierry Hasard for his great work in the vines and in the cellar.  Check out his informative website http://www.la-marfee.com/ (sorry, French only)

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $23.99