This week’s virtual trip around the world of sparklers takes me back to France, specifically the Languedoc-Roussillon region that is renowned for great quality-price ration (“QPR”) wines. I must confess that, so far, I’ve only enjoyed Crémants (as sparkling wines produced in France, but outside of Champagne are known) from the region.
The Crémant de Limoux is an Appellation d’origine contrôlée “AOC” for modern-styled sparkling wines from the vineyards around the town of Limoux in southern France. Crémant de Limoux are considered more modern because Chardonnay, and Chenin Blanc dominate the blend, as opposed to Mauzac, which historically dominated the Blanquette de Limoux sparkling wines from the same region.
I’ve always found specificity of the French wine AOC system, which is based on the concept of terroir, interesting. Especially compared to the relative freedom winemakers here enjoy. For example, according to Wikipedia…
…Crémant de Limoux contains 40-70% Chardonnay, 20-40% Chenin Blanc, 10-20% Mauzac and 0-10% Pinot Noir. AOC regulations dictate that the wine be aged for a least a year on the lees prior to disgorgement.
Here in the US, we don’t dictate the grapes, or percentage of grapes that go into wines, although there are some labeling laws.
2008 Antech “Cuvée Eugenie” Crémant de Limoux
Region: France>Languedoc-Roussillon>Crémant de Limoux
Variety – 50% Chardonnay, 40% Chenin Blanc, 10% Mauzac
Residual Sugar – Unknown
Production method: Méthode Champenoise; Minimum of 18 months on lees.
Alcohol by volume: 12%
My tasting notes follow:
Appearance: Pale straw color
Aromas: Brioche with Fuji apple and floral notes
Body: Medium-light bodied with zippy acidity, and a creamy mousse, and mouth feel
Taste: Sweet green apple, pear, and honeyed toast
Pair with: The beauty of sparkling wines is their pairing versatility with a variety of foods. This one would be a good aperitif, and also pair with creamy fish dishes, or fondue.
This is a very good for $14, and another winner from the Languedoc-Roussillon region. It would make a great house sparkler, especially if you prefer French wine. I recommend. (87 pts) To find this wine, click here
- Champagne harvest begins (marketwatch.com)