Friday, April 22, 2016

A 2CV Journey through Corbieres AOC (Languedoc,France) by Philip S. Kampe


The region is an AOC, an Appellation d;origine controlee, and was created in 1985,  With over 35,000 acres, the area encompasses an enormous variety of microclimates and soil types. The wines, due to terroir, run the gamut of flavor profile possibilities. Wind, rain, cold weather from the northwest and warm weather from the Mediterranean often collide to help create terroir imbalance.

With over 2,200 wine producers in total and 33 cooperatives, the region produces roughly 75 million bottles, of which 25% are exported.

Carignan is the dominant red grape of the region. Other grapes used, especially for blending include Syrah, Black Grenache, Mouvedre and Cinsault. For the few white wines that are produced, Roussane, Muscat, Vermentiono, Maccabeu and Terret Blanc dominate.

Recently, I visited the region and had the opportunity of taking an excursion in Corbieres in a classic 2CV Citroen, driven by one of the area’s top sommeliers. We drove in the countryside and circled the three wooded boundaries. We stopped, hiked to a legendary castle-like summit to sample local wine, which was poured by some of the area’s winemakers. I suddenly began to understand the diversity of the region, as we were perched on top of a hill, where we could see much of Corbieres terrain.

These diverse wines should be sampled. They are delightful, plentiful and sold in America.The U.S. is one of the export markets for the wines from Corbieres. Most bottles are priced under $14 and should be available at your local wine shop.

Corbieres is the largest appellation in the Languedoc-Roussillon area of southern France and is responsible for over 40% of its wine production.  Red wine production dominates followed by rose and white.

                                                        Sommelier 2CV Chauffeur

Philip S.Kampe

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