Revealing Rosé: Ch. de LANCYRE Rosé, Pic St. Loup, 2014

Regis Valentin and family in the vineyards of Pic St. Loup

Regis Valentin and family in the vineyards of Pic St. Loup

The Person:
Regis Valentin – vigneron, winemaker, owner, motive force

The Place:
The Lancyre estate in Pic St. Loup in the Languedoc in the south of France. Located 15 miles inland from the Mediterranean shore at 2,000 feet of elevation, Pic Saint-Loup is considered the Languedoc’s best wine district. Summer days can top 100°F but night-time temperatures almost always drop to below 60°F and sometimes even below 50°F.

The Story:
The chateau was built in the 1500’s on the ruins of a 12th century fort. Records of winemaking in the building date back to 1550, and ruins of stone cuves from that period are still visible. In 1970, the Durand and Valentin families bought the chateau and 37 acres of Carignan and Cinsault vines. While the two families worked to restore the facilities to good working, they also planted additional acreage of Syrah and Grenache. At the time of the purchase, the Durands already had 30 acres of their own vineyards, including a small recently planted parcel of Syrah, one of the first in Languedoc. The Valentins also brought in their own 20 acres, mostly Grenache, Carignan and Cinsault. Today the Domaine consists of 128 acres of AOC vineyards, mostly in Pic Saint-Loup, with all of the appellation wine estate-bottled at the Château. Overall, Lancyre is one of the the top wine estates in the Languedoc producing wines in commercial quantities at fair prices.pic-saint-loup-rose 2014-wine

The Wine:
Ch. de LANCYRE Rosé, Pic St. Loup, 2014 ($14.99)
A 13.5% alcohol richer Rosé blend of 50% Syrah, 40% Grenache, 10% Cinsault grown on clay/limestone-based soils made using a mix of press must and tank-bled wines.    Red-salmon-pink in color, bright and clear with good legs; dry, medium-bodied with freshly balanced acidity and very light phenolics.  Bigger, richer, darker Rosé almost in the chillable red range. Riper red fruits with minimal citrus and more richness and texture in the mouth but with plenty of mineral-earth to give if definition and character. If Rosé can be serious, this is. A great choice for Rosé with foods including dry hams, olives, nuts, and potato chips as well as richer seafood soups and stews and even roast chicken or duck served with a green salad. BearScore: 93. (This is a year-in, year-out personal favorite.)

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