A.O.C. Fitou Domaine Grand Guilhem


Photo Pascal Huit

Price French tax included, at the property :
Grand Guilhem 2015 : 14.00 €
Grand Guilhem 2011 : now only available in 50 cl : 11.50 €
Angels 2014 : 25.50 €
Angels 2014 : 26.00 €
Angels 2013 : 26.50 €


Fitou Angels 2014 : 92/100 !
Purple color, clear and bright, many tears. The sound nose suggests a fresh black fruit, the blackcurrant, the cherry flesh, a note of spices, the vanilla; a nose with an extreme youth despite Southern French accents in the background. The clean attack on the palate delivers intense aromas of blackcurrant; the evolution is more structured with a fruity flesh of exceptional purity; a robust wine, a tannic structure nedding to melt. Despite its youthful character, this wine offers some qualities, but restrained, allowing to age. CLASSY, A GREAT POTENTIAL.

Les citations
*** Guide Carité, ** Guide Solar, ** Guide Hachette, * Guide Vins Bio “Le sang de la terre”, Grand Guide des vins de France (Michel Bettane & Thierry Desseauve), L’Express, La Revue des Vins de France (“Les domaines phares de l’appellation”), Cuisine et Vins de France (“Nos 500 meilleures bouteilles”), L’amateur de cigares, N7, Saveurs, Midi Libre, Vinum (Europas Weinmagazin), Guide Ellébore “Vins, vignobles et vignerons”, *** 1001 Dégustations, Guide Gilbert & Gaillard des meilleurs vins de France ( noté 86/100), Le Point : “Grand Guilhem sélectionné parmi 49 Fitou dégustés à l’aveugle”, Guide Dussert-Gerber (Lauréat 1ers Grands Vins du Languedoc),  Decanter (89/100), ***** in Guide Hubert (Pierre Casamayor) for Angels 2013 & 2014, …

Vin sélectionné par www.1001degustations.com

” Sous nos latitudes, de rares pionniers ont ouvert la voie que d’autres empruntent aujourd’hui. Prouvant que l’élégance, la complexité et l’harmonie ne sont pas l’apanage des régions plus septentrionales, que les terroirs méridionaux portent en eux des trésors de délicatesse qu’il importe de révéler. Cela exige de la part des vignerons beaucoup de sensibilité et de savoir-faire et, de la part des amateurs, davantage de curiosité et d’attention.”

Marc Médevielle – Terre de Vins


History :
Royal wine from 17th to the 18th century
Oldest A.O.C. in Languedoc-Roussillon (1948)

Harvest :
By hand labour into small crates, cagettes

Soil and environment (“Terroir”) :
Soil shale
Steep slopes (mountain Fitou)
Climate Mediterranean : very dry air
Average annual temperature : 15°C, 339 days of sunshine each year.

Grape varieties (“Cépages”) :
55% Grenache noir (smooth, mellow, creamy, and velvety, delicacy)
35% Carignan (powerful, rich and deep colour)
10% Syrah(spirit and elegance, length in mouth)

Average Yield :
18 hl/hectare

Wine production (“Vinification”) :
Carignan, Grenache Noir and Syrah : the binches are de-stemmed.
Fermentation process with indigenous yeasts at a controlled temperature of 25°C,
No artificial additives or sulfites and no chemical or mechanical manipulations
Pressing with a manual press.

Maturation (“Elevage”) :
Kept in vats for 10 months after the harvest.
The finished wine has no stabilizers or preservatives.

Bottle :
“Bordelaise Seduction”

Tasting (“Dégustation”) :
Colour : intense Ruby
Nose : Very ripe red fruits, quince, cherry “eau de vie”
Palate : The aroma in the nose is found on the palate (prunes, nuts),
Good balance, tanins present, carressing and mellow.
This wine can be drunk as it is and can be kept for a long time (10 to 15 years according years)

Serving temperature :
16°C à 18°C ; do not hesitate to decant this wine one hour before serving.

Food to accompany this wine :
Meat in sauce or roasted, “cassoulet” (traditional dish of either duck, goose, pork or Toulouse sausage cooked in a casserole with white haricot beans), game, cold meats, cheese.

Some words from Richard M. James, Contributor Decanter, www.winestravelguides.com, Time Out South of France guide
You’ll (eventually) find Séverine and Gilles Contrepois in a beautiful spot pretty much smack in the middle of the Corbières hills, not far from Villeneuve or Durban nestling in the rugged inland part of the slightly confusing Fitou appellation (well, all you really need to know is that its geography is purely political…). They have 10 organic ha of vineyards (25 acres) – officially blessed as such since 2004 – around their splendid stone-built home, which also has four guestrooms (they do B&B and wine dinners) and a couple of adjoining holiday cottages (see website below). I tried these wines with Séverine and Gilles at the Millésime Bio organic wine show:
2011 Fitou – herby vs smoky nose, attractive dried currant and ripe dark plum aromas/flavours; quite powerful and chunky with firm tannins vs lingering maturing “sweet” fruit. 87
2010 Fitou – more mature (obviously) and savoury with rich yet elegant fruit; lovely peppery concentrated palate with solid structure, big finish and dried fruit vs meaty flavours. 89
2008 Fitou – developing savoury aromas underpinned by nice “sweet” dried fruits; quite elegant for an 05 (some are pretty rich and big) with again fair grip but not too much. 88
1 Chemin du Col de la Serre, 11360 Cascastel des Corbières. Tel: 00 33 4 68 45 86 67, www.grandguilhem.com.

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