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Carré du Coq
THE PERFORMANCES – RED
This wine is our only Performance from 2020. It showcases all the excellence of a rare parcel of Syrah, revealing a side to this grape variety that is anything but ordinary. Surrounded by clusters of small trees in the heights of the Montagne de Ventabren, this tiny, square shaped parcel gave birth to an absolutely top-class Syrah in the summer of 2020. From the moment they were picked, the grapes were treated with the utmost care and exalted by fermentation in foudre.
This Syrah is timeless and enveloping, caressing the mouth with finesse and elegance, in a pure expression of this grape on the exceptional terroir of the Montagne de Ventabren at Cairanne.
THE 2020 VINTAGE
Its deep ruby red hue offers a presage of the wine’s intense fruit and character. The first nose evokes violets, black fruit and touches of menthol, finely underscored by skilfully mastered barrel ageing that serves to embellish the fruit. Great integrity and poise characterize the palate, with tannins that are both refined and rich, and superb balance between acidity and sweetness. One could almost believe this was a New World Syrah, with its bright fruit and persistent freshness, with absolutely no excess weight.
The parcel of Syrah at the origin of this wine (n°5C) has something very intimate about it. In the manner of a Clos, it is enclosed by a hedge of oak, and is reached by a narrow path that meanders through the woods. These oak thickets mark the boundaries of a small, square parcel that inspired the wine’s name (carré means square in French). They also help to preserve the aromatic precursors from the excessive summer heat. The vines are quite young (15 years old), which is conducive to the expression of stunningly fruity characters.
The renown of the Montagne de Ventabren is due to its position at altitude and its orientation, which ensures excellent sunshine exposure that ripens the grapes to perfection. Here limestone scree from the Miocene period carved out of the rock by the force of erosion, and scattered with rare flintstone, alternates with lacustrine marl. This deep, well-balanced terroir counterbalances the intense heat of the Provencal sun by providing unexpected freshness. The combination of altitude with the marl and limestone terroir results in complex, powerful, fresh and elegant wines.
La Clavelle n°5 = 0.71 ha
Age of vines
HARVESTING & VINIFICATION
After successive tastings, our oenologist decided to harvest the grapes at the precise moment they reached maturity. They were hand-picked in whole bunches in the early morning to preserve all their aromatic qualities and transported in small 16kg crates.
On arrival at the cellar, the best bunches were selected and cossetted at every stage to preserve the integrity of the fruit and its aromas. They were loaded by hand into the de-stemmer and sorted to retain only the healthy berries without any stems or stalks. These were then carried by conveyor belt into a 50hL thermo-regulated wooden conical foudre. At this stage the berries remain completely intact, releasing no juice since there has been no crushing action on the grapes.
Harvesting in the early morning means that the starting temperature is very low (10-12°) which enables the onset of fermentation to be slowed down to ensure gentle extraction and encourage the development of aroma precursors. The potential that we identified during berry tasting in the vines was quickly confirmed by the superbly balanced must.
Gentle but regular immersion of the cap was undertaken daily during alcoholic fermentation to encourage early stabilisation.
11 september 2020
Temperature of grapes at reception
We retained only the free run juice. We then chose to transfer part of the blend (65%) into three new barrels of different toast levels from two different cooperages to undergo malolactic fermentation. The remainder was aged in stainless steel vats. Malolactic fermentation in barrel contributes to the subtle integration of the oak characters into the wine as early as possible in the ageing process to add complexity without masking the fruit.
ENJOYING IT AT ITS BEST
Carré du Coq 2020 may be enjoyed now but will continue to mellow for 10 years.
We recommend decanting and serving at 14°C.
Carré du Coq is an outstanding Syrah whose expression has been intensified by an exceptional terroir. It requires no embellishment and merits a moment of contemplation on its own, such is its singularity and its eloquence. Try it simply with bread and truffle butter.
TPC (DO 280)
3,26 g/L d’H2SO4 / L