Tasting notes on the 27th of november 2013
An attractive, deep purple-red robe. The nose opens on notes of kirsch cherry, evolving into forest floor and dark chocolate aromas. On the palate this wine is clean and bright, with powerful yet silky tannins. Notes of spicy Syrah and a hint of truffle, and a long finish characterised by a stony, mineral profile (think struck matches and gunflint). The vanilla notes of barrel ageing soften with aeration; the balance and structure suggest that this wine has potential to develop over many years. It will benefit from carafing to reveal all its nuances; match it with meat and dishes cooked in sauce, and aged cheese.
Predominantly Syrah (80%) with some Grenache (20%), made with a highly focused approach from carefully chosen parcels which are selected after tasting the fruit from each row, using the very best vines; only the most perfect bunches from each vine are taken.
20 hl / ha
Les Arques is the name of a small area in the east of the Minervois appellation, at 250 metres above sea level. The soil is clay-limestone and mainly stony. The vines are planted on a slope.
After selecting the fruit in the vineyard, the boxes were emptied by hand into a destemmer, in order to ferment our 2500 kg of Syrah grapes in a small container. After letting them macerate for a few days we started the alcoholic fermentation and daily punching down. The wine was too hard and lacked complexity, so we decided to add 500 kg of Grenache, selected from the higher slopes; this was introduced midway during the fermentation to give more fruit character and roundness. After five weeks, the press wine was blended with the free run juice after racking, to enhance the tannic structure. After a week of racking to take off the gross lees, we transferred the wine into barrels of different toast and age.
Eight barrels in total. Malolactic fermentation happened in spring 2012. After 20 months of ageing, our wine had acquired the desired complexity. We bottled it on August 29, 2013 and let it finish its ageing in bottle.