Great Gascogny Wines
We're feeling very lucky to have a great new selection of wines from the Cotes de Gascogne region. Our taste testings left us very impressed, and as one may well know, the French region is excellent for great quality and value. Let's take a look at what makes an exceptional Gascogny wine.
Nestled in the south west between Bordeaux in the north, down to the Spanish border, all the while gaining a soothing influence from the Atlantic Ocean. It has IGP status to provide consumers with a guarantee of quality, whilst still allowing producers to experiment with blends and new production of varietals.
White wines are the region's forte, with a variety of popular native grapes such as Gros Manseng, Ugni Blanc, Colombard, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. The best winemakers have finely honed the blend of these grapes to provide a balance of refreshing, crisp acidity alongside harmonious citrus and orchard fruit flavours, sometimes with a hint of the tropical for exquisite effect.
Domaine de Maubet white (11.5% £8.90) is an excellent example, blending Ugni Blanc (Trebbiano), Gros Manseng and Colombard. Fresh aromas of citrus mingle with grassy undertones for a delightfully fruity dry, crisp wine with mouthwatering flavours of apple, citrus and even a hint of gooseberry.
New in store, Domaine Laffitte Sauvignon Blanc & Gros Manseng (12% £10.70) blends these two grapes to perfection. Produced by the Laffitte brothers, it shows a rich nose revealing exotic fruits, boxwood and subtle toasted hazelnut. These flow on to a fruity, round and fresh palate making this an excellently balanced and easy drinking wine.
The Laffitte brothers' Domaine Laffitte Sauvignon Blanc varietal (12% £10.20) has an intense nose developing aromas of citrus, granny smith apple and a flinty character. The palate is very ample, with a subtle and elegant development of flavour, good length and a bright finish.
Red wines are on the increase for popularity in the region, with a rising number competing with Bordeaux Clarets, often without the regional price tag. Key grapes to look out for include Tannat, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot.
A long-term shop favourite is Domaine de Maubet red (11.5% £9.50) which blends Merlot, Tannat, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. It shows a great union between ripe fruit and elegant tannins, with delicate spice and toast aromas balanced with fruity flavours and a silky texture.
As an added bonus to our collection, we have Domaine Laffitte Malbec & Cabernet Franc (12% £10.10) which blends 80% Malbec with 20% Cabernet Franc. Vibrant cherry red in colour, it bursts with aromas of red fruit, stone fruit, fresh plums and cherries. The juicy palate brings intense fruit flavours, a rounded, smooth texture and a satisfyingly long finish.