Southwest France

Southwest France is a large wine region stretching from the southern edge of the Massif Central toward the western Pyrenees near the Atlantic Ocean.  Individual wine producing areas within the region tend to be small and depending on how the individual areas are classified, the entire region can be viewed as having as many as 25 different areas.  I've selected wines from two of the areas which include Cahors and Gaillac.

From Cahors, I've selected two very good Malbecs that are produced by a consortium of vignerons in that area from their older "vieilles vignes" vineyards.  From Gaillac, I've selected both a white wine and a red blend.  The white wine is produced from an indigenous local grape called Loin de l'Oeil.  The red blend is quite fun and it is blend of seven local indigenous grapes.

The Wines

“Far from the Eye” Loin de l’Oeil 2020 

This wine is from Gaillac and it is 100% Loin de l'Oeil which is a local indigenous grape known for its floral and  spicy qualities.  Loin de l'Oeil means "far from the eye" and that refers to the long stems of the clusters where the berries are far from the "eye" (or the bud) on the branches of each vine.

 

Aromas include narcissus, honeysuckle, white flowers, citrus blossoms, yellow roses, and hints of lemon.  Flavors include honeydew melon, white peaches, and white grapefruit.  There is medium body, good balance and acidity, and a long minerally finish.

 

Food pairings would include crab, shrimp, sole, red snapper, clams, oysters, seafood pasta and salads, veal and pork piccata, pork tenderloin, chicken, Asian pork, chicken, and seafood dishes, Mexican pork and chicken dishes, chile verde, and green salads.    

Tarani Reserve 2014

This is a Cahors Malbec from "Vieilles Vignes" of at least 30 years of age.  Aromas are of peonies and ripe dark fruits and flavors include a combination of very ripe stone fruits and black fruits such as blackberries.  There is a very well balanced medium mouthfeel, nice acidity, and interesting tannins on the finish.

Food pairings would include Filet Mignon, New York steak, rib eye, roast beef, beef stew, short ribs, pork chops, pork ribs, cassoulet, Asian beef dishes, vegetable stir fry, onion soup, and sheep's cheeses.

Impernal 2018

This is a Cahors Malbec from "Vieilles Vignes" of at least 40 years of age.  Aromas include blackberries, dark cherries, and dark chocolate.  Flavors include blackberries, boysenberries, red peaches, and nectarines.  There is an intriguing medium body that feels light on the palate but fully saturated in terms of flavors, good balance and acidity, and a lingering and refreshing full finish.

 

Food pairings would include filet mignon, New York Steak, Roast Beef, beef stew, veal chops, veal stew, roast pork, pork chops, grilled chicken, coq au vin, cassoulet, salmon, tuna, clams, mussels, jambalaya, Asian and Mexican beef, pork, and chicken dishes, Indian lamb curries and Tandoori dishes, grilled sausages, and medium to rich cheeses.
 

Terre Metissee 2016

  

This is a fun wine that mixes two cultures (Southwest France and Languedoc), four types of different soils, and seven types of grape varieties.  Terre Metissee is a collaborative efforts between grape producers in Gaillac and Vignobles Dom Brial in Languedoc near Perpignon who have jointly introduced this blended cuvee.

 

The overall blend is of Grenache, Mourvedre, Syrah, and Carignan from Languedoc and Malbec, Negrette, and Braucol from Southwest France.  The color is sumptuous, of a deep black, and the nose is characterized by intense aromatics mainly of cherry kirsch, blackberries, and cassis.  The mouthfeel is round and full and the finish is velvety and with great finesse.  This elegant cuvee goes perfectly with grilled meats such as filet mignon, New York steak, lamb, veal chops, roast pork, hamburgers, game such as duck and elk, Asian beef and pork dishes, fine chesses, and chocolate desserts.

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