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Archive for June, 2010

2005 Chateau de Cazeneuve Le Roc des Mates

Pic Saint Loup is a rather small area that produces some of the best wines in Languedoc. Chateau de Cazeneuve is considered the Cru Exceptionelle of this small region. Chateau de Cazeneuve has been run by André Leenhardt since his purchase in 1988. He released his first wine in 1991. The estate top red cuvee’s are Le Roc de Mates(21 EUR) and  Le Sang du Calvaire(35 EUR).

For 2005 vintage Le Roc de Mates is a predominantly Syrah(90%) based blend with Grenache and Mourvedre, aged for 18 months in French oak and Le Sang du Calvaire – 100% Mourvedre aged for 24 months in French oak.

2005 Chateau de Cazeneuve Le Roc des Mates

The wine has an opaque dark red/purple deep color, almost pitch black. The nose is sweet, with huge amounts of blackcurrant, cassis, toasty, graphite, dark pepper, the dark ripe fruit is dominating nicely everything. In the mouth the wine is very concentrated, full body, almost oily mouth-feel, with big blackcurrant and blackberries flavors, tobacco, a pleasant mineral character, chalky, dusty and firm tannins. The wine has a nice high acidity that makes it vibrant and keeps all components balanced, including the 14.5% alc level. The wine finishes dry with a medium plus aftertaste and nice blackcurrant flavors. Very good+ to Excellent

This is a big dark juicy wine that, in my opinion, tastes better than many more expensive and better rated wines. I remember tasting this wine together with a 2006 Chateauneuf du pape Le Vieux Donjon(35 EUR) in January this year and I did like the Cazeneuve better. As far as I know Chateau de Cazeneuve is preferred by many Michelin star restaurants in France and I do not believe is because of the low price. Check the wine yourself.

Thanks for reading…

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Categories: Coteaux du Languedoc

Numanthia 2000

June 4, 2010 1 comment

I got this wine from a trip to Barcelona from Vila Viniteca and had the wine yesterday afternoon. The Numanthia Bodega was established in 1998 and purchased by LVMH in 2008, so it is expected for the their prices to start going up with the 2008 vintage. The Numanthia-Termes Toro Termes 2005($27), which is an entry level wine of the Bodega, was selected the number two wine in Wine Spectator Top 100 for 2009; 2004 was an exceptional vintage for this Bodega producing a 100 points wine: Termanthia that sells for  about 400 EUR now. So there is a proven track record for what this producer is capable of. They are using only Tempranillo for their wines produced in Toro, a very promising region in Spain.

Numanthia 2000

Price: 35 EUR

Alc: 14.5%

The Numanthia 2000 comes from 50+ years old Tempranillo vines  and spent 18 months in new French oak.

The wine has a nice almost opaque dark red with purple hues color. The nose evolved during the 2 h while I had it: initially earthiness, licorice, ripe red cherries, tobacco, cassis and towards the end pure sweet plum and hints of  vanilla, with  nicely integrated oak. In the mouth the wine is big and heavy, full body, with still firm tannins, but with a velvet mouth-feel, ripe red cherries, dark chocolate, tobacco. A heat from the alcohol is present on the mid palate which is a bit troubling. The wine finishes with a medium plus to long aftertaste with dark chocolate and ripe sour cherries. I find the wine a little bit unbalanced as the alcohol can be clearly felt in the mouth. I was really expecting more balance from a 1o years old wine, but the wine reminded me more of a young Grenache based wine with all the heat that can sometimes be felt especially in some Chateauneuf du pape wines. Good+ to Very good


I would have scored this wine higher, as it has a beautiful complex nose, a long aftertaste but I was really troubled by the heat that sometimes can overpower the fruit. Perhaps pairing the wine with big food would balance that heat and make this wine more pleasant. Consumed alone can be tricky. I liked much better the Numanthia 2006 which even younger and having 15% alcohol shows beautiful balance.

Thanks for reading…

Categories: Spain
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