It’s easy to overlook the potential of the vineyards in the south of France, given the marketing giants of Burgundy to the North. But in recent years, it has been these very Bourgogne producers who have been looking to the possibilities of the South. We can quote more and more examples now, such as Jean Marie Fourrier and Anne Gros.
“Southern French spirit, Burgundian soul” – is an incredibly appropriate depiction of Anne Gros and Jean Paul-Tollot’s joint property in the Minervois of Languedoc. But don’t expect anything big or bold, as the method Anne Gros and her team implement is totally Burgundian in the region: from vine training and barrels to bottling, even for the Terroir, it shares something in common with Vosne Romanee, the vineyards in both site are 220m high, which is the ideal height on the slope for not exposing to too much wind or being too flat which does not encourage drainage.
The wines are silky, fragrant and complex. Interestingly, Anne dubbed the top cuvee ‘Les Carretals’, her “Richebourg” of the South.
Tasting the 4 new cuvees of 2015s from the domaine, my favourite was ‘Les Fontanilles’, which merits the silkiness on the palate and shows the obvious wilderness of the south with the scents of blackberry, dark plum, liquorice and, to a certain degree, spice – which are contributed by the key 4 grape varieties in the region, Grenache, Carignan, Cinsault and Syrah.
Anne Gros is clearly not only a wonderful magician with Richebourg but Minervois too!
– Jessica Chan