Tasting of Cahors
Ready for the tasting – the tunnel under the Château d’Amboise
– mercifully cool during the late June heatwave
Last week I covered the Côt (Malbecs) presented by the Amboise producers during the Côt Conference at the end of June, this week it is the turn of their guests – Cahors producers. Each of the producers showed two wines.
2016 La Nuit des Rossignols, Domaine la Bérangeraie
The Domaine la Bérangeraie has 30 hectares of vines planted on the Causse. The domaine was founded in 1971. La Nuit des Rossignols comes for a 205 hectare parcel yielding 40 hl/ha. Aged in oak for one year the 2016 is attractively softly textured with rich black fruits and well structured with well worked tannins.
2015 Titouan, Domaine de Capelanel
Sébastien Dauliac runs this 14 hectare domaine based in Luzech, which is in converting to organic viticulture. This 2015 is an easy drinking Cahors not one to be analysed in detail but instead to enjoy for its soft black fruits – can be served a little chilled in summer.
2017 Au Cerisier, Château Combel la Serre
Jean-Pierre Ilbert founded this domaine of 22 hectares in 1998. Jean-Pierre has now retired with his son Julien and Sophie, his wife, running the business. The 2017 Au Cerisier has ripe rich black fruits, concentration and finesse.
2018 Extra Libre, Château du Cèdre
Pascal Verhaeghe, along with his brother Jean-Marc, run the 17 hectare Château du Cedre, which is now I think is Cahors’ most famous and highly regarded estate. It was in the 1970s that Charles Verhaeghe moved from polyculture to full-time wine production with 1973 being the first vintage. The brothers took over in 1987 and gradually moved to organic viticulture gaining certification in 2012.
Both of the Cèdre have highly seductive, voluptuously soft, mouth filling texture and structure. Black fruits and violets are very much to the fore in this very fine Extra Libre.
2015 Le Cedre, Château du Cèdre
Le Cèdre is made from vines aged 35-45 years with a low yield of 28 hl/ha.. The 2015 was aged for 24 months in a mix of new foudres and and one-use barrels. Like Extra Libre it has wonderfully seductive texture and brilliantly worked soft tannins, finesse, balance and a freshness in the long finish.
A young apprentice @Château du Cèdre…….
2015 Pur Plaisir, Château Haut-Monplaisir
Cathy and Daniel Fournié took over the running of the 15-hectare family estate in 1998. Their daughter, Mathilde, joined them in 2015. The 2015 Pur Plaisir spent 26 months in barrel and is soft, concentrated and powerful. There is a slight touch of greenness but nevertheless has a good potential to age.
2015 Les Galets, Clos Triguedina
Clos Triguedina is one of the long established estates in Cahors. The First vines were planted in 1830 by Etienne Baldès. Jean-Luc Baldès with his wife Sabine is the seven generation of vigneron to be in charge of the Clos. Les Galets is one of a trilogy of wine from different terroirs. Au Coin du Bois and Les Petites Cailles make up the trio of wines.
Les Galets comes from the third terrace laid down by the Lot. The soils is mainly clay-limestone. Les Galets is aged in oak for 12 months and has a delicate texture, is currently tightly structured and will benefit from more time in bottle.
2016 Las Camps, Château Lamagelaine Noire, Janicot Vignobles
This 16 hectare domaine is one of a trio of estates owned by Janicot Vignobles in the Lot. The Domaine de Mériguet (Cahors) and Domaine de Matèle (Côtes du Lot). Las Camps comes from 45 year old vines and has attractive concentration and texture with notes of black cherry. It has good length with the potential to age for at least 10 years.
2015 Mas des Etoiles, Mas des Étoiles
In 2007 two producers Arnaud Bladinières and David Liorit created the Mas des Etoiles. The two had originally met in 1998 at the Montagne Saint Emilion wine school. They have one hectare of white varieties – Chardonnay and Sauvignon destined for Côtes du Lot and four hectares of Malbec for their Cahors. No weedkiller is used and the soil is tilled.
This 2015 domaine wine comes from vines planted in 1986 and is aged for 18 months in barriques, has good concentration and a seductive texture – powerful with a long finish.
2015 Une étoile est née, Mas des Étoiles
This cuvée comes from slightly older vines of the third terrace: they were planted in 1980. Although it spends 24 months in new oak barrels the oak is not noticeable. This Star is born has lovely, soft mouth filling black fruit, weight and length.
Clearly I was impressed by the wines of Mas des Étoiles, which I had never tasted before.
2016 Château de Cénac, Vignobles Pelvillain
Didier Pelvillain runs this trio of estates Châteaux de Cenac and du Port and Domaine du Theron. This business started in 1968 when Didier’s grandparents passed on the family’s vines to his parents – Odile and Claude. Together they expanded the business. Didier’s 2016 has soft, rich texture with a spicy black fruit character and a long finish.
2016 Tour de Terre, Domaine du Prince
Based in Cournou, the Jouves family, who own Domaine du Prince, can trace their history back through three centuries. Now run by Bruno and Didier this is a domaine of 27 hectares of vines planted exclusively on clay limestone. The estate has been selling its own wine since 1971 – the year Cahors was promoted to appellation. Tour de Terre is a lieu-dit (a name of a parcel of vines). It has good concentration, texture and length with a potential to age.
2014 Lou Prince, Domaine du Prince
Lou Prince comes from two small parcels totalling 75 ares (0.75 ha) from vines at least 35 years old. The wine is aged for a minimum of 20 months in new barrels. The 2014 has smoky aromas, plenty of concentration and a long finish. A wine to keep.
Like those shown from Amboise, overall the standard of these Cahors wines was high. Coming from further south the Cahors wines are more structured and powerful than those from Amboise – an interesting contrast.