|Grapes||Cinsault, Clairette, Syrah, Grenache, Carignan|
Of course this wine has a lovely story of human endeavour and generosity overcoming the destructive power of nature as described below so beautifully by Tamlyn - but this is not where the joy stops. It is a delight to drink too! Pretty, bright coral pink in the glass, this has a lovely precision on the palate. Clean fresh and with gentle pink fruit and delicate floral notes. Amazingly harmonius and pretty considering its complicated conception! L&S (Aug 2013)
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WINE OF THE WEEK 19th July 2013 - www.jancis robinson.com - Ch de Roquefort's La Grêle 2012 IGP Méditerranée has now been bottled and, bearing a striking label embossed with the names of every estate that contributed, it's a wine that really does give new meaning to the term 'assemblage'. It's pale, almost the creamy pink colour of antique roses. Quite restrained on the nose, then dry but with beautifully judged sweetness of fruit - peaches and raspberries. Very elegant, perfectly formed, lingering on the finish. Something about this wine put me in mind of an early morning walk through the cool crisp perfume of a formal rose garden. It has such quiet, ordered and understated loveliness. Who would think it had been born out of the tempest and destruction of a hailstorm?! The wine was open over three days and right to the end the freshness and fruit held true. A remarkable wine, not only for the story, but also for the pleasure it delivers in the glass. Bravo, Raimond de Villeneuve and the 37 generous winemakers of Provence! Tamlyn Currin - www.JancisRobinson.com(Aug 2013)
Making wine is a risky business. It's a never-ending tango, sometimes a dual, with capricious and occasionally cruel Mother Nature. Fire, mildew, rain, frost, and hail are just some of the annual threats a vigneron must face. Even so, it's not often that an entire year's harvest is wiped out in the breathtaking space of seven minutes. Raimond de Villeneuve, owner of Ch de Roquefort in Provence since 1995, has always managed his vineyards biodynamically - and was lucky enough to take them over from previous owners who felt they couldn't afford chemicals! He makes dark brambly reds that explode with life and are wonderfully perfumed and wild with garrigue. His rosé, Corail, pale, fresh, and elegant, has been one of my favourites for several years. But on 1 July 2012, a hailstorm of unprecedented violence hit his vineyards and within minutes he had lost everything. What makes this story remarkable, though, is what followed. 37 vignerons, neighbours and friends and people from as far north as the Rhône started rolling in. Donating vines, grapes, or must, they gave him enough to create a cuvée so unique that it is a first in France: a vin issu de la communauté vigneronne. (I bet that had the bureaucrats in paroxysms of red tape.) And unlike their normal rosé, this one has to be classified as IGP Méditerranée. See below for the roll of honour of estates who helped (and, make no mistake, there are some seriously impressive names there). Corny as it sounds, it's people like these who restore faith in mankind. The 37 estates that contributed to La Grêle: Ch de Beaupré, Ch de Pibarnon, Ch Lacoste, Ch de la Noblesse, Ch Les Mesclances, Ch Pradeaux, Ch Revelette, Ch Sainte-Anne, Ch Sulauze, Ch Vignelaure, Dom de Gayolle, Dom de la Bastide Blanche, Dom de la Bégude, Dom de la Mongestine, Dom de la Réaltière, Dom de la Tour du Bon, Doms Ott, Dom de Saint-Bacchi, Dom de Sulauze, Dom de Trévallon, Dom de Villeneuve, Dom de Bunan, Dom du Bagnol, Dom du Coulet, Dom du Sans Regret, Dom du Trapadis, Dom Henri Milan, Dom La Fourmente, Dom La Suffrène, Dom Les Béates, Dom Les Luquettes, Dom Les Terres Promises, Dom Pinchinat, Dom Richeaume, Dom Sorin, Dom Saint Louis-Jayne and Dom Tempier.Tamlyn Currin - www.JancisRobinson.com(Aug 2013)
Château de Roquefort
Owned by the eccentric Raimond de Villeneuve, one of the rising stars of Provence, Chateau de Roquefort is beautifully situated on the edge of the Bandol appellation in a huge amphitheatre of vines. Since 1995 Raimond has been following organic/biodynamic principles, which are very much reflected in the purity of his wine.
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