Chateau Maris, terrific wines – Jeb Dunnuck
« Château Maris is a Minervois estate producing terrific, character-filled wines… » Jeb Dunnuck
South of France: New Releases from the Languedoc and Roussillon
August 11, 2021
This report looks at a handful of producers from the Languedoc and Roussillon, mostly 2018s and 2019s. As I’ve written
in the past, these regions are a treasure trove of beautiful, character-filled wines that sell for a song. I hope you’re able
to give some of these a try!
LES AMANDIERS 2018 – 95 POINTS
My favorite in the lineup from Maris, the 2018 Minervois La Livinière Les Amandiers is largely Syrah (they usually include a small amount of Grenache) and offers a straight-up awesome bouquet of ripe black raspberries, almond, spicy oak, ground pepper, and Asian spices. Rich, full-bodied, and powerful, it has a nicely oaked, concentrated, seamless style, wonderful tannins, and a great, great finish. As with the other 2018s here, it has a slightly more front end-loaded profile, yet it should still have at least 7-8 years, if not a good decade, of prime drinking. It’s another fabulous wine from this estate I wish every reader could taste.
DYNAMIC 2018 – 92 POINTS Readers looking for a rich, complex, meaty Minervois with loads of character should check out the 2018 Minervois La
Livinière Dynamic. Giving up a deep purple hue as well as loads of ripe plum, black raspberry, and currant fruit, it’s medium to full-bodied and has loads of peppery garrigue and assorted meatiness, ripe tannins, a deep, layered midpalate, and a great finish. It’s beautifully done, with a soft, supple, already delicious style geared for enjoying over the coming 3-5 years.
BRAMA 2018 – 92 POINTS All varietal from old vines planted in clay and limestone soils, the 2018 Grenache Gris Brama is a stunner that just about
jumps out of the glass with its exotic lemon and lime zest, flower oil, honeysuckle, buttered toast, and even green almond-like aromatics. These all carry over to the palate where the wine is medium to full-bodied, has a rounded, elegant, seamless texture, an undeniable sense of minerality, good acidity and a great finish. An incredibly classy, delicious, balanced white, it should keep for 2-3 years with no issues, and I suspect it have an interesting evolution even beyond that.
LA TOUGE 2017 – 89/91 POINTS
“Leading off these new releases from Domaine Maris, the 2017 Syrah La Touge (there’s some Grenache in the blend as well) offers plenty of black and blue fruits as well as classic pepper, violets, and earthy aromas and flavors. It’s medium to full-bodied, juicy, balanced, and already delicious.”
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