Mas Champart, IGP Pays d’Oc, Occitanie, France, 2017
On terret blanc
Grown in the Languedoc, mainly in the Herault department, with about 1300ha (2011). Rare, well adapted to very poor very stony calcareous soils, drought resistant, late budding and ripening, and if left on the vine for an extended period, can develop very complex aromas (according to the above producer). It is approved as a secondary variety in both Corbieres and the Minervois.
Its sensory profile is fresh, light and dry, pale hued, with rich exotic aromas such as passion fruit, with grapefruit and lemon.
Terret noir is related, and approved in Chateauneuf du Pape and Minervois, and Corbieres as a secondary variety; terret gris is similarly related, which is mainly grown in the Languedoc.
This wine: lot No. L18-6 (on front label), 1700 bt production, a blend of 70% terret blanc (planted in 1900) with grenache gris (both from the Saint Chinian region, where terret blanc is not approved); vinified and aged in 500 litre futs for 9 months, coated natural cork closure, 14% abv, Caves Notre Dame Beziers, €14 (09/19)
Consumer tasting note: mostly terret blanc (along with 30% grenache gris) a rare variety from the Languedoc. A little underwhelming to start, but does get going after a little time, with a profile of ripe, stewed and slightly cidery apple, with a citrussy dimension then hints of richer stone fruit with a distant tropical edge. Fresh, with noticeable alcohol at 14%, a sea food wine, with a long finish.
Drink now – RTD, and will keep for 1-2 years – Wait. No need to decant.
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, pale intensity lemon, showing tears [no deposit].
Nose: clean, medium (+) intensity, youthful, with aromas as they come, of a touch of spice, pear skin, a little yellow apple, white peach, grapefruit segments edged with lemon pith, and after some time a hint of richer yellow peach.
Palate: dry, medium (+) acidity, medium (+) alcohol, full body, medium (+) intensity, a velvety almost oily texture with a low-key grip, with flavours of ripe green apple, grapefruit segments, a touch of riper stone fruit edged with cidery-stewed apple and a tropical nuance, with a hint of almond on the end. A long length, with a clean rich finish of stewed apple, edged with richer stone fruit.
Quality: good, well balanced acidity with alcohol, which appears a tad high; a modest intensity, but better in mid-palate with a similar concentration, showing some youthful complexity, with a long palate-clean finish.
Drinking readiness/ageing potential: drink now, unsuited to ageing, but will keep for a year or two – balanced now, nothing remarkable about it, made for early drinking.