Country: France Region: Roussillon Vintage: 2011
Varietal: Fortified Category: Wine
"Based in Rivesaltes, Domaine Cazes was founded in 1895 by Michel Cazes. Today, with 220 hectares in production, it is the largest certified organic and biodynamic estate in France. The wines are now made by Emmanuel Cazes (the fourth generation). The decision was taken to move to organic and biodynamic viticulture in 1997. Situated in a vast amphitheatre between the Pyrenees and the Mediterranean, the Roussillon region is the sunniest area of France, with a wide variety of soil types. The soils in the Cazes vineyards are a mix of limestone and marl, with some 'galets roulés' (the 'pudding stones' also found in Châteauneuf-du-Pape). Since the vines have been farmed biodynamically, the Cazes family have found that not only are the vineyards healthier, but also the vines are stronger, with deeper roots.
The vins doux naturels are a speciality of the Roussillon generally and of Cazes specifically, although Cazes also produce a range of fresh and minerally dry wines. The 'Canon du Maréchal' wines in particular combine good quality with affordable pricing. They are bottled under screwcap to retain their freshness and have a moderate 13% alcohol. The 'Ego' is a step up in quality and displays complex notes of plums, spice and touches of leather, with delicate tannins and a lingering finish. The vin doux naturels are of stunning quality and regularly win awards at international competitions."
Winemaker: Emmanuel Cazes
Situated between the French Pyrenees and the Mediterranean, the Roussillon is the sunniest area of France, giving very ripe grapes, which are perfect for the production of the Vin Doux Naturel sweet wines. Since farming biodynamically, the Cazes family have found that not only are the vineyards healthier (because only natural treatments are used), but also, the vines are stronger, with longer roots. In addition, there is more freshness and minerality in the wines, which is important in such a warm region.
The Vins Doux Naturels are a speciality of the area. A portion of the Muscat grapes were pressed immediately, with the remainder undergoing skin contact at cool temperatures before the fermentation started. The wine was fortified using grape spirit, causing the fermentation to stop and leaving a sweet wine. It was then matured on its fine lees for around five months to ensure the sweetness was well integrated. The wine is unoaked and refreshing in style. Considering the wine was fortified, it is relatively light in alcohol at 15% and therefore fits into the 'light wine' category.
Pale gold in colour with lovely fresh, vibrant aromas of citrus and exotic, tropical fruit, peaches and apricots. Full and sweet on the palate with pure citrus and apricot flavours, notes of mint and spice and a great level of acidity which lifts the finish and ensures impeccable balance.
Food Suggestion: Perfect chilled as an aperitif, with classic patisserie pastries or with a creamy dessert.
Closure: Natural Cork ABV:15.5% Acidity [g/l]: 3.24