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Languedoc-Roussillon

Languedoc-Roussillon

A vast area in the south of France between the Rhône and the foothills of the Pyrenees, the Languedoc-Roussillon produces 40 per cent of the nation's wine and has recently undergone a vinicultural revolution. 

Until 20 years ago the majority of wines from this region were of a poor standard and produced in vast quantities destined for the European...

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    • Origin
    • Southern France
    A gorgeous full bodied blend of red grapes commonly grown in the South of France. Ample ripe black fruit aromas are present throughout and are joined ... Read More
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    £9.35 exc VAT
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    • Origin
    • Southern France
    A wine which is light in body and has a lower than usual alcohol content. Citru, gooseberry and apricot on the nose and palate. Crisp and refreshing. Read More
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    £6.45 exc VAT
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    • Origin
    • France
    A nose of ripe black plums and rich redcurrant lead into a palate which is soft and smooth with a subtle suggestion of cassis and wood smoke.  Read More
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    £6.25 exc VAT
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    • Origin
    • France
    This is an intriguing wine from the Languedoc. It has a wonderful aroma of cherries with subtle spice. On the palate it is full and rich with wonderfu... Read More
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    £8.85 exc VAT
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    • Origin
    • France
    This is a delicious little gem from the South of France and is a Pinot Noir that shows wonderful aromas of cranberry and raspberry fruits.  Light and... Read More
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    £8.99 exc VAT
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    • Origin
    • France
    The nose is a well-balanced combination of red and dark berries with a touch of vanilla. In the mouth this southern French red is medium bodied with a... Read More
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    • Origin
    • France
    Soft plum and juicy winter berries dominate the palate on this velvety red from the South of France. Read More
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    • Origin
    • France
    Citrus, gooseberry and freshly cut grass on both the nose and palate with a refreshing finish. Read More
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    • Origin
    • France
    This is a fresh and fruity dry white from the South of France.  Pale straw in colour with a zesty appley flavours intermingled with soft tropical fru... Read More
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    • Origin
    • France
    It is rare to find good Pinot Noir at this price. Sourced from fruit from the Aude Valley in the Southern end of the Languedoc this delicious wine has... Read More
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    £7.75 exc VAT
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    • Origin
    • France
    Deeply coloured, medium body in style. An easy-drinking wine from the south of France. Read More
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    • Origin
    • France
    Fresh and aromatic green fruits on the nose with a splash of grapefruit and other rich citrus flavours lingering in the mouth. Read More
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    • Origin
    • France
    This wonderful 'Vin doux Naturel' is seductively sweet and exhibits luscious ripe black cherry fruit with a leathery, savoury edge. An exceptional par... Read More
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    • Origin
    • France
    A fine blend of Rhone Valley grape varieties which marries a fruit driven core with a complex peppery finish.  Read More
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wine lake but since the 1980s there has been a change of ethos and remarkable results.  The Languedoc-Roussillon has become a region of exciting variety and escalating quality, and though the areas of Corbières and Minervois have been at the forefront of this improvement they are by no means the only wines worth seeking out.

Styles of Wine

The Languedoc-Roussillon is as varied in its styles as could be.  White, sparkling, rosé and 90 per cent of France's dessert wines, known as vins doux naturel, come from the region, but it is for its reds that it is largely significant.  The wines of Corbières and Minervois are the most famous, though other AOCs are improving all the time and the region's vin de pays, usually labelled as Vin de Pays d'Oc, can be excellent for both quality and value.

Key Vines

The region once had a great variety of vines, but disease and declining markets have sounded the death knell for many.  Cinsault, Grenache and Carignan are the three great survivors that produce much of the red wine of the Languedoc-Roussillon.  Traditional white vines include Ugni Blanc, Vermentino, Bourboulenc and Muscat.

In the last 20 years there has been a great deal of planting of international varieties.  Syrah and Mourvèdre are permitted in several AOC wines, but Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Viognier are not and will be classed as Vin de Pays d'Oc with the name of the grape on the label.  These represent some of the finest wines on offer in the region.

Climate and Terroir

It is a very large region but the climate is generally a Mediterranean one.  Its winters are mild and sufficiently wet, the summers are warm and dry and it is reliable enough to not carry the risk of a disastrous vintage.  The soil, however, is varied and allows for individuality in the grapes that are grown.

Prior to the '80s the trend had been to plant vineyards on the plains, where the conditions for the grape grower were easiest.  Sadly, conditions for the drinker were less than ideal as this approach led to weak and insipid wines.  In recent years, with the improvement of ambition and knowledge, vines have been planted in the poor soil of slopes where little else will grow and these harder-working grapes have produced far more rewarding results.

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