I have decided for this month as we fall into the regular pattern of our long California summers, that I wanted to end the summer with some beautiful wines from Provence. I found Domaine Rimauresq on a recent trip to France, and I wanted to share some of their beautiful wines with you.
The microclimate of Rimauresq is a real expression of the Côtes de Provence appellation.
The vineyard, located at an altitude varying from 140 to 190 meters, enjoys the combined influence of the beneficial effects of the Mistral and the beneficent shade of Notre Dame des Anges.
The estate consists of a clay-schist and crystalline soil, with sandy and stony parts. It is common to benefit from the combination of several soils (shale degraded, pink sandstone, rolled pebbles) within the same plot.
It is this unusual diversity that allows Rimauresq to excel in all three shades of wine.
Nine noble grape varieties make up the Rimauresq vineyard.
Grenache , Carignan and Cabernet Sauvignon for the reds, Rolle for the whites, finally Cinsault , Mourvèdre, Tibouren and Ugni-Blanc for the rosés.
In Rimauresq, everything is done to preserve the best of the fruit of the vine .
A modern cellar half buried allows to treat the grapes by gravity.
The wines of Rimauresq are not easily tamed.
It takes patience to savor all the diverse personality of each of the varietals.
Their vinification begins with a morning harvest to keep the freshness of the night in the heart of the fruit. Spurred berries macerate for a long time in cold temperature-controlled stainless steel vats.
During pressing, which remains moderate to obtain the best juices, press and drop juices are separated and put to cold. After decantation, the clear juice will be separated from the mud which will be filtered on land.
After a period of stabulation, the juices then ferment at low temperature in stainless steel vats for 2 to 3 weeks.
After the fermentation, the whites and rosés will be aged on the lees with a regular stirring which will enrich the wines in fat and in aromas.
The malolactic fermentation is blocked to preserve the freshness of the wines.
The wines will be slightly filtered before being bottled.
RIMAURESQ IS NAMED FOR THE RIVER REAL MAURESQUE THAT TRAVERSES THE DOMAINE. THIS 60 HECTARE PROPERTY WAS REESTABLISHED IN 1882 AFTER THE PHYLLOXERA EPIDEMIC DEVASTATED THE REGION. DOMAINE DE RIMAURESQ WAS ALSO ONE OF THE ORIGINAL FOURTEEN CRU CLASSÉ PRODUCERS THAT RECEIVED HISTORICAL CRU DESIGNATION EVEN BEFORE THE APPELLATION BOARD NAMED COTES DE PROVENCE AS AN AOC.
THESE HISTORIC PROPERTIES STILL PRODUCE SOME OF THE MOST SOUGHT AFTER AND LONG LIVED ROSÉS OF THE REGION. THE 2016 ROSÉ IS A BLEND OF 43% GRENACHE, 24% CINSAULT, 10% MOURVEDRE, 8% SYRAH, 6% CARIGNAN AND 9% ROLLE. THE GRAPES UNDERGO A LIGHT MACERATION WHEN HARVESTED AND ARE THEN GENTLY PRESSED. NO MALOLACTIC FERMENTATION OCCURS KEEPING ACIDITY FRESH AND LIVELY AND THE WINE UNDERGOES A LIGHT FILTRATION FOR CLARITY. A PERFECT SUMMER ROSÉ FOR ANY CLASSIC MEDITERRANEAN FARE.
COTES DU PROVANCE, CRU CLASSÉ
THE DOMAINE SITS AT THE FOOT OF THE MASSIF DES MAURES MOUNTAIN RANGE, 20 MINUTES FROM TOULON. WITH A UNIQUE MICROCLIMATE, THE ESTATE BENEFITS FROM BOTH THE COOLING MISTRAL WINDS AND THE SHADE OF THE MOUNTAINS ABOVE. THIS SHADE GIVES A LONGER RIPENING PERIOD IN THE CRUCIAL WEEKS PRIOR TO HARVEST. NINE NOBLE GRAPE VARIETIES ARE FOUND AT RIMAURESQ, INCLUDING CINSAULT, MOURVEDRE, AND TIBOUREN FOR THE ROSÉS.
A BLEND OF CINSAULT, GRENACHE GRIS, AND TIBOUREN, THE 2017 CRU CLASSÉ OFFERS FRESH AROMATICS OF RED BERRIES, WHITE FLOWERS, AND GINGER AND A BODY THAT BALANCES DEEP CITRUS AND FLORAL FLAVORS WITH ZESTY MINERALITY AND EXCELLENT CLARITY. THIS WINE IS TRUE TO THE PROVENCE STYLE IN HIGHLIGHTING THE TERROIR OF SANDY, GRAVELY SOIL.
COTES DE PROVENCE BLANC, 2017
100% ROLLE (VERMETINO)
IN SPRING, BUD BURST AND FLOWERING WERE PERFECT. THE SUMMER WAS DRY AND WITHOUT EXCESS HEAT, WITH COOL NIGHTS, ALLOWED TO KEEP A GOOD SANITARY CONDITION. UNFORTUNATELY THE NEAR ABSENCE OF PRECIPITATION AND REGULAR WINDS FROM MAY TO OCTOBER SEVERELY DISRUPTED YIELDS, FORCING THEM TO HARVEST IN EARLIER THAN EXPECTE. THE 2017 VINTAGE IS THEIR SMALLEST HARVEST IN MORE THAN 10 YEARS.
THE JUICE OF THE GRAPES WAS CONCENTRATED BUT NOT EXCESSIVELY HIGH IN ALCOHOL. THE FRESHNESS AND BALANCE, TYPICAL OF THE COLD TERROIRS OF RIMAURESQ WERE A BEAUTIFUL BALANCE IN THE BERRIES DESPITE THE LACK OF WATER. THEY HARVESTED THEIR GRAPES FOR 15 DAYS BETWEEN AUGUST 23RD AND SEPTEMBER 19TH.
WITH MINERAL CHARACTER AND FLORAL, THIS CLASSIC WHITE HAS A STRONG CHARACTER. AROMATIC, COMPLEX AND CHEWY, VERY LONG IN THE FINISH.