From: Cotes du Roussillon, France
Blend: Grenache Blanc, Grenache Gris, Roussanne
90 pt. 2020 Centenaire – Decanter World Wine Awards
Taste: This is one of the most exciting and affordable white wines we’ve tasted from the Roussillon lately, its structure, tension, and verve are fantastic & it’s sure to please a wide spectrum of wine lovers. In the glass, citrus and white peach meet notes of fennel and thyme. These flavors are enhanced by a touch of nutmeg and hint of baking spice, right along with a refreshing stony intensity that lingers on the finish.
Pairing: When it comes to pairings, this wine pairs well with a variety of seafood dishes, such as grilled shrimp, lobster, or scallops. It also goes well with grilled chicken or pork, as well as creamy pasta dishes, risotto, or flatbreads (in fact, we’re sharing a vegetarian pizza pairing that combines fresh and Mediterranean vibes below). The wine's creamy texture and complex flavors make it a great pairing for rich and savory dishes.
If you’re a vegetarian or craving a hearty vegetarian pairing, this wine pairs well with dishes that are rich and flavorful, such as creamy vegetable risotto, grilled portobello mushrooms with a Mediterranean flare, or roasted root vegetables with herbs and spices. The wine's complex flavors and minerality complement the earthy and savory flavors of vegetarian dishes.
Salad Pizza With White Beans and Parmesan
By Ali Slagle
About, by Eric Solomon, importer. For twenty years, we have worked with Jean-Marc Lafage at his estate in the Roussillon and across the border in Spain, where he consults on several projects. As good as his wines were when we first met him, they only get better with each vintage.
While his family has been growing grapes and making wine in the Roussillon since 1791, it was Jean-Marc’s early insight into the potential for the Roussillon to make a wide range of dry wines at very affordable prices that established his “new” estate. While his grandfather and father made wine for the family, JeanMarc was the first to break away from selling most of his grapes to the local cooperative. Over the generations, his family had amassed scattered vineyards throughout the region, which now totals over 160 hectares of vines, most of them in excess of 50 years in age.
Another factor in Jean-Marc’s success is the diversity of the terroirs in the Roussillon. Squeezed between the far southern edge of the limestone Corbières Massif to the north and the granitic Pyrenees mountains in the south, the Roussillon is an undulating terrain of complex soil types, orientations, and exposures. Three river valleys, the Agly, Têt, and Tech, drain the region generally flowing west to east, where they meet the Mediterranean. Within its borders, Jean-Marc has identified six principal sub-zones in the appellation: the Crest, the Upper Agly Valley, the Uplands of Fenouillet, Les Asprès, the Mediterranean Plain, the Rocky Coast. Each region has its own expression and when you factor in the various varieties Jean-Marc has planted, you can understand why he can make so many riveting wines at such reasonable prices.
Centenaire takes its name from the 100 year-old vines of Grenache Blanc and Gris Jean-Marc Lafage farms just a few kilometers from the Mediterranean on gravelly clay soils. One of the greatest white wine values in our portfolio, the final wine blends these ancient grapes with up to 20% younger vine Roussanne. To make a wine that is both rich and balanced the grapes are harvested in two passes, the first when they just reach ripeness and are still high in acidity and a second pass when the grapes are fully ripe with rich fruit flavors. The wine is then aged in a combination of tank and new French oak barrels.
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