A d'Aussières Merlot
The winter of 2020-2021 brought lower temperatures than the previous four vintages. The vines were hit by several successive frosts, with a particularly severe one during the night of 7 to 8 April that damaged some of the plots that were relatively advanced in the growth cycle. This was the most intense period of frost since 2017, and the most extensive that Domaine d'Aussières has experienced. The other significant weather factor was the very low rainfall, which delayed the restarting of the vines’ growth after the frost. The soil’s water reserves were only replenished at the very end of the season, after the harvest. These extreme weather conditions delayed the growth and development of the vines and the ripening of the grapes. The harvest started on 13 September, two weeks later than in 2020.
The weather was favourable during the harvests. A few days of rain interrupted the picking schedule, but they were welcome in that they helped the final stage of the late-ripening grape varieties.
The estate is nestled in the rugged hills just behind the Mediterranean coastline of Narbonne, in the South of France.
The soils are very shallow and rocky on the slopes, and deeper and sandy on the plain. Yields are voluntarily kept very low in order to preserve the vines and ensure the production of high quality grapes.
The grapes come from flatter, lower lying parts of the estate where the deeper soils with underlying sandysilt provide the optimal growing conditions for grape varieties more associated with the Bordeaux region : Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. Blended with Mediterranean grape varieties, they contribute to the wine’s complexity.
The grapes are picked at optimal ripeness, destemmed and then vinified using traditional maceration methods.
The maceration period varies from 10 to 12 days with gentle extraction and fermentation at fairly low temperatures (around 25°C) in stainless steel vats in order to preserve the wine’s full aromatic potential. Ageing is then carried out in vats so as to keep all of the fruit’s freshness and purity.
Beautiful dark ruby colour with subtle garnet highlights.
The nose offers a range of black fruit notes underscored by a hint of liquorice, characteristic of Merlot wines in the Languedoc. On the palate, there are the usual liquorice and slightly peppery notes, complemented by secondary flavours of tea and hay. The finish has a hint of spice reminiscent of cloves. The still young, crunchy tannins give the palate a pleasant roundness and suggest excellent potential for this wine to gain in richness and finesse.>
: 100 %