From: Limoux, Langedouc, France
Taste: The wine presents as pleasantly dry, with a bouquet of ripe pears, fresh-cut grass, and an aromatic blend of herbs like tarragon and coriander, complemented by a hint of lime. Its crisp acidity makes it an ideal choice for an aperitif or pairing with light snacks. Wine Enthusiast has recognized the distinct quality of this wine, awarding it an impressive 90 points.
Pairing: Blanquette de Limoux, a sparkling wine known for its distinct green apple flavors, offers a delightful pairing experience with a variety of apple-based dishes. Its crisp and tart profile complements the sweetness and texture of classics such as apple cake, apple pie, apple crumble, and apple compote, creating a harmonious balance between the wine and dessert. Beyond sweets, Blanquette de Limoux also pairs wonderfully with savory dishes. Its refreshing nature makes it an excellent companion to chicken or fish tacos, where it cuts through the meat's richness. This wine is a match made in heaven for lovers of fried foods, adding a clean, palate-cleansing contrast to the flavors. Moules-frites, a traditional French dish of mussels and fries, also pairs beautifully with this wine, with its enthusiasm complementing the briny, oceanic flavors of the mussels.
A particularly exquisite pairing for Blanquette de Limoux is goat cheese. The rich and earthy characteristics of goat cheese are elegantly balanced by the dry acidity of the wine. This combination prevents the dish from becoming overly rich, maintaining a delightful balance. We recommended an herb quiche with goat cheese, where the creamy, buttery texture and herbaceous notes of the quiche are beautifully cut through by the crisp acidity of Blanquette de Limoux.
Quiche With Herbs and Goat Cheese
By David Tanis
About. The history and operations of the Antech family winery, spanning six generations, present a rich tapestry of dedication, innovation, and evolution in the realm of winemaking. The journey began in the late 19th century with Zélie and Jules, marking the onset of a deep-rooted passion for wine in the family.
In the early 20th century, Eugénie, a dynamic and courageous figure, played a pivotal role in guiding the winery through challenging times, including wars, and securing its future. The 1930s saw the union of Edmond and Marguerite, linking two winemaking families and further strengthening the Antech legacy.
The 1960s were significant, with Georges and Roger, the sons of Edmond and Marguerite, taking charge of the estate. They made a crucial decision in the 1970s to focus exclusively on sparkling wines, a move that shaped the winery's future direction.
Françoise Antech, representing the sixth generation, joined the winery in 1996. Her arrival heralded a new era, marked by her bold and fiery approach, elevating Antech to new heights in sparkling wine production. As the current leader, Françoise embodies the strong character of her predecessors, being a guardian of heritage while actively engaging in social and cultural initiatives in her region.
The winery's success is also rooted in its deep understanding and utilization of the terroir. The unique character of their sparkling wines comes from the wise blend of three distinct terroirs in Limoux: the freshness of the Pyrenees, the vinousness from the ocean influence, and the roundness from the Mediterranean climate. At 400 meters above sea level, on the south-facing rocky slopes, four grapes are grown: Mauzac, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, and Pinot Noir, from which cremants and blanquettes are made using the traditional method. All grapes come from the winery's estates and are exclusively hand-picked. The grapes are immediately pressed using a pneumatic press. The first fermentation takes place in thermoregulated steel tanks.
In their vineyard, innovative experiments are conducted to enhance the finesse and elegance of their wines. These experiments occur in the highest parts of their appellation, using old vine stocks on stony, south-facing hillsides.
Sustainable development is a core principle at Antech. The winery is dedicated to integrated winemaking, adopting the Terra Vitis approach, demonstrating their commitment to producing high-quality, authentic wines in harmony with the environment. Their sustainable practices extend beyond viticulture, encompassing waste recycling, energy conservation, and sourcing from environmentally responsible suppliers.
Antech's technical prowess is evident in their production methods and the historical significance of Limoux as the birthplace of sparkling wine. The family has expanded their estate, integrating their own estate grapes and those from select high-altitude vineyards to add freshness to their wines. Their Cremant and Blanquette bottlings undergo extended aging, contributing to their distinct quality.
The strong presence of women in the winery's leadership across three generations, particularly the influential role of Francoise Antech, highlights the winery's progressive approach and its significant place in the French winemaking landscape.
Mauzac is a unique grape variety indigenous to the Limoux region, renowned for its resilience and optimal adaptation to local climate conditions. The expert winemaker Francoise crafted an excellent sparkling wine from this indiginous grape, Blanquette de Limoux M le Mauzac 3.0. The "3.0" signifies a no-sugar-added approach throughout three crucial stages of winemaking: fermentation, tirage (the onset of secondary, or bottle fermentation), and dosage (the conclusion of bottle fermentation). This method allows the wine to mature on lees for 36 months, enhancing its strength, structure, and versatility while gaining elegance.
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