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Minervois

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 CAZELLES... two pairs of (experienced) hands...

a new adventure

Anne Gros and Jean Paul Tollot, two winegrowers in Burgundy for over 20 years, have combined their expertise to serve the fine terroirs in Cazelles, in the Minervois !!! Love at first sight ?... Absolutely ! Reflection ?... Of course !

 

We chose Cazelles for the diversity of its soil, made of limestone, clay and sandstone, for the discovery of 4 main cepages (Carignan, Grenache, Syrah and Cinsault), for the quality and the wide age range of its vines, the privileged environment at the foot of the Black Mountain, its altitude of 220 metres (identical to Vosne- Romanée).

A building was created to grow, receive, make and care for these fine terroir wines. It has been designed with great attention to detail, respecting the energies, the wines and the people... A beautiful architectural structure made of simple but noble materials...terracotta, wood, stainless steel... Roundness is eveywhere... the road, the hills, the tanks, the barrels... the wines.

 

http://www.ledevoir.com/art-de-vivre/vin/373799/anne-gros-et-gregory-patriat-la-bourgogne-des-justes. par Jean Aubry

http://www.youtube.com/user/VineWineCellarVideos#p/a/u/0/01mMytKTXwU par Elisabeth Villeminot / Peter Vezan

http://tastelanguedoc.blogspot.com/2011/07/burgundian-in-minervois-domaine-anne.html by Rosemary George

http://www.les5duvin.com/article-carignan-story-83-le-minervois-vu-par-des-bourguignons-83295780.html par Michel Smith

http://bordoverview.blogspot.fr/2012/05/domaine-anne-gros-jean-paul-tollot-two.html

http://www.asianpalate.com/wine-article/getting-to-know-anne-gros/

http://www.asianpalate.com/aptv/jeannie-cho-lee-mw-interviews-anne-gros/

http://www.lapresse.ca/vins jacques-benoit/201304/08/01-4638525-les-vignes-heureuses-danne-gros.php?utm_categorieinterne=trafficdrivers&utm_contenuinterne=cyberpresse_B2_vins_1508967_accueil_POS2

http://www.huffingtonpost.fr/fabrizio-bucella/thon-facon-thailandaise-vin-accompagnement_b_3835636.html?utm_hp_ref=france


Article de David Cobbold L'Amateur de Vins septembre 2011: Ce Domaine qui appartient à 2 bourguignons, produit des vins dont la finesse d'arômes et de texture dépasse tout ce que j'ai gouté dans l'appellation. Mais ils possèdent aussi une belle structure et peuvent se garder quelques années. Leurs vins sont plus chers que les autres mais ils le valent bien!

Article du Web Wine Advocate juin 2011:

Anne Gros of the eponymous Vosne-Romanee domaine and her partner Jean-Paul Tollot (of Domaine Tollot-Beaut) happened on the site of their new estate not long after they conceived the possibility of working vineyards in the South, and Anne says that as soon as she grasped the diversity of soils and glimpsed the several substantial parcels on offer around tiny Cazelles - 14 hectares at the high, northern edge of appellation Minervois just before it gives way to Saint-Chinian (at the same elevation as Vosne-Romanee's crus), where nights are generally cool even in mid-summer - she was smitten. Gros and Tollot have since taken to the task of preserving the ancient vines and vineyard ecosystems in this neighborhood with born-again zeal. The Gros-Tollot family of four now lives and works here most weekends, although during the protracted picking of these sites so dramatically different in soil, exposure, and cepage - a harvest which overlaps that of the Cote d'Or - they can literally be pulled in two directions. Given this couple's background and well-known talents, it comes as no surprise to learn that they are rendering wines unlike any others in Minervois, or indeed anywhere else in the Languedoc. Their aims are inter alia to showcase each of their principle grape varieties - very much including unjustly-slighted Cinsault and Carignan; each of their soil types - sandstone and iron-rich chalk-clay; and elegance, levity, and refinement, vinous virtues that, yes, might well be dubbed Burgundian. The prices of top cuvees emanating from Gros and Tollot's new, extremely sophisticated facility (much of its equipment mirroring that at Domaine Anne Gros in Vosne) also set them Again apart from all but a handful of Languedoc collections, in which respect Gros openly expresses her disappointment that trade resistance has forced her to lower her sights a bit, quite possibly beneath price levels that will be sustainable long-term given the low yields and innovative, labor-and capital-intensive viticultural efforts that characterize the Gros-Tollot regimen. (Example: there are three different tractors to accommodate the widths of rows and method of vine-training in different parcels.) One might argue that Gros was naive about consumers' expectations of Minervois vis-a-vis famous-name Burgundy. But it is the trade and consumers who ultimately must shed prejudice and recognize good value, unique personalities, and exciting innovations in wine when they taste them - otherwise the market will dictate that quality like that of these wines no longer issues from the Languedoc, notwithstanding their eloquent testimony to what is possible.

The Gros-Tollot La 50/50 represents tank-vinified fruits of old vines Carignan and Cinsault with those of some younger Grenache.Les Fontanilles is from a north- and west-facing, densely garrigue-rimmed bowl of predominantly ultra-friable sandstone but at places stony calcaire, planted with Grenache (in the majority), Cinsault, Syrah, and centenarian Carignan, fruits of the latter two sorts being matured in aged barriques. From south-facing but water-retentive limestone and all four cepages - though Syrah is dominant - La Ciaude is raised entirely in barrel; as is Les Carretals, from largely centenarian, dominantly Carignan vines in a near-clos whose lime-, iron-, and clay-rich soil reminds Gros of her parcel of Richebourg - except that this site is extraordinarily rocky by any standards whatsoever.

After three years of rigorous de-budding, notes Gros, her younger vines seem now to have begun regulating themselves and producing a smaller, balanced crop. Incidentally, the inaugural 2008 collection here gained in charm and complexity during the nearly 12 month interval between the two occasions when I tasted it. Whereas the 2009s - harvested on average two weeks later than the 2008s and bottled last November - kicked into malo directly out of their primary fermentations, malo-lactic transformation of the 2010s was - in typically Burgundian fashion - delayed until spring, so my notes on wines of that vintage encompass the occasional lot with residual malic acid or significant residual CO2. I did however deem my note on one wine representative enough to be worth publishing as a foretaste of what is to come. Although there was no drought stress or desiccation here in 2010, Anne Gros reports that she and Jean-Paul Tollot were nonetheless amazed on pressing to realize how low was the juice-to-skin ratio as well as the pH, all of which one tastes as vibrant concentration, not to mention sees in wines whose deep colors belie their sense of levity and elegance.  David Schildknecht

Article The Underground Wine Letter by John Tilson 12/2012:

This 35 acre estate was recently created in Minervois by two Burgundy producers, Anne Gros of Domaine Anne Gros in Vosne-Romanee and Jean-Paul Tollot of Domaine Tollot-Beut in Chorey-lès-Beaune. They purchased parcels of vines situated in the high, northern edge of the appellation and built a new state of the art winery facility. Many of the vines are very old and are planted in varying soil types. Anne and Jean-Paul both come from long established Burgundy families and are 20 year wine growers and producers. The first vintage in Minervois was 2008. I have known of this venture for some time as we have talked about it on our visits to visit Domaine Anne Gros in Burgundy. We have been visiting this domaine each year for over 30 years which is well before Anne took over some 20 years ago. Under her direction, the wines of Domaine Anne Gros are amongst the most finesseful and lovely of all Burgundies. They are wines that I buy every year and drink often. Also, at Domaine Tollot-Beut, where we have also visited, the wines are lovely and supple with very pure fruit. But, having never tasted the wines from Minervois, I must confess I really did not know what to expect. Now, after tasting them, all I can say is WOW! It is no exaggeration to say that the wines show a Burgundian quality in the sense that they are so supple and seductive. Yet they clearly are different in terms of the structure and flavors. And, since they are so delicious to drink now, they are hard to resist. Yet I suspect the wines will be long lived. If you love balanced red wines with lots of fruit this are wines you really must try!

Terre de Vins  Nov./Déc. 2013

Cazelles... il faut retenir ce nom. Il désigne un village et un plateau posé au pied de la Montagne Noire, piqué de petites cabanes de pierre, abris contre les intempéries. Bientôt ce sera l'un des premiers territoires du Languedoc à bénéficier d'une UGP (unité géographique plus petite), cette nouvelle dénomination créée en 2012 par l'Inao. Une douzaine de vignerons indépendants, conscients de l'extrême qualité de leur terroir au sein de l'appellation Minervois, se sont regroupés pour en faire connaître la spécificité. « Au départ, ce sont des hommes et des femmes qui ont commencé à travailler ensemble, explique Philippe Sicard, président de l'association des vignerons du plateau de Gazelles. Au fil des mois, une vraie dynamique est née entre nous et, aujourd'hui, nous vivons une aventure humaine très forte. »

Le plateau peut se découvrir de loin en grimpant sur le Puech, une colline surmontée d'une table d'orientation, mais c'est en foulant son sol que l'on ressent mieux l'évidence de son caractère. Sous les pieds, une mer de cailloux calcaires, blancs, friables ; à hauteur de regard, une végétation fournie qui témoigne d'une pluviométrie raisonnable ; au-dessus de la tête, le vent qui s'emploie à nettoyer ciel et vignoble... sans oublier une altitude moyenne de 150 mètres, gage d'une fraicheur toujours bienvenue.

Le résultat ? Il se goûte dans le verre. Quels que soient les choix à la vigne ou dans la cave, des dominantes sont clairement apparues lors de la dégustation que le syndicat du cru Minervois a organisée en préambule, à notre arrivée, sur le plateau de Gazelles. Au nez, des arômes profonds de mûre et de cerise noire ; en bouche, poivre, cade, genévrier, girofle sur des tanins d'une grande élégance ; en finale, la minéralité se double d'une fraicheur mentholée, voire d'une légère salinité qui laisse une délicieuse sensation et provoque l'envie immédiate d'y revenir. Quant aux blancs, qui ne font encore qu'une timide apparition sur le plateau, les spécialistes leur prévoient un bel avenir. A suivre de près.

ANNE GROS ET JEAN-PAUL TOLLOT      DE LA BOURGOGNE A CAZELLES

« On cherchait un endroit qui nous parle. » En 2006, Anne Gros, à la tête d'un des plus beaux domaines de Bourgogne, et Jean-Paul Tollot, lui aussi vigneron et originaire de la même région, décident de créer un domaine à quatre mains où leurs talents respectifs trouvent matière à modeler. Mais, pour ces deux vignerons exigeants, l'affaire n'est pas facile. « L'idée était de créer quèlques hectares haute couture dans le Sud. Nous sommes allés nous promener dans le Var, dans les Côtes-du-Rhône, dans les Costières : rien ne nous convenait et on a bienfailli abandonner. Unjour, un marchand de biens nous emmène dans les environs de Narbonne. Soudain, je me suis aperçue qu'on était en altitude. J'ai posé le pied sur le sol : du calcaire et de l'argile I Ce crissement sous les pieds, ce blanc sur le fond rouge de l'argile, ça m'a tout de suite fait vibrer I » Anne et Jean-Paul viennent de trouver la perle rare : un ensemble de petits îlots de vignes anciennes et de cépages variés. Aucune pollution visuelle ou sonore, une vue qui porte loin... c'est là qu'ils décident de bâtir leur caveau, surmonté d'une maison (à la bourguignonne) suffisamment spacieuse pour y recevoir les enfants et les copains. "Nous avons choisi un style contemporain et une maison à ossature bois, très économe en eau et en énergie". Cette vie entre deux régions n'affecte en rien l'attention qu'Anne et Jean-Paul portent à leurs cinq cuvées. Des arômes voluptueux savamment maîtrisés, une matière magnifique entre la soie et le velours, une fraicheur surprenante et une belle longueur en bouche. Oui, de la haute couture !

 

 

 

 

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Anne and Jean Paul trimming, during the green harvest, during the wine making and the maturing period.

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Anne attaching the supports, pruning, lifting, hoeing... not forgetting all the administrative tasks. 

Jean Paul dealing with the mechanics, looking after the soil, and thephytosanitary treatments.

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Thibaut is now helping us to work the 1' ha, with tender loving care, in a reasoned way, with the tilling.

Our first vintage :  2008

 

We expected a racy style, laced with minerals, and fresh. We had a lot more! A very good balance of sugar and acidity ! A reason for such a result ? Slow maturity, cool nights, temperatures around 17 degrees during the harvest... This rminds us of the standard conditions in Burgundy... Harvest from September 18 to October 5.

This first vintage came to life with anxious anticipation. It did not disappoint !    It is vibrant.

Each plot and cepage were vinified separately in order to get acquainted with their expressions. We waited a year to discover their particuliarity and complementarity. One year of maturing before deciding on their blending.

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Four vintages were born. They now rest in a Burgundian shaped bottle known as The Authentic. The colour orange played a decisive role in this Domaine... Cellars, materials, labels and cartons are all in harmony, like the colour of the Earth merging with the Sun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The wines are available at the Domaine Anne Gros in Vosne-Romanée. Should  you wish to discover more deeply this wonderful terroir. It would be a pleasure for us to welcome you in our gîte in Minervois.

www.maison-lacolombiere.com

 

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Have you made the arrangements for your next holiday (or week-end break) ?

Why not treat yourself to a short break in the Minervois region? 

 

 

 

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L'abus d'alcool est dangereux pour la santé. A consommer avec modération.
Réalisé par i-création