Domaine du Cabanon - 2019 Tir a blanc
Alain Castex is considered the Godfather of natural winemaking in French Catalunya. With a natural winemaking legacy that stretches back to the early '90s, Alain and his partner Ghislaine were two of the original ‘Garagistas’. After selling his Banyuls vineyard, Le Casot de Mailloles, in 2015, Alain moved into semi-retirement on a tiny vineyard where he pursues his lifelong passion for farming and winemaking. This single hectare vineyard where he now produces Les Vins de Cabanon is situated on the sandy, clay soils of Trouillas, inland from Banyuls. The production is tiny, with just a couple of thousand bottles of four different wines made each year. The vines here are very old and extremely low yielding, requiring enormous manual labour. Alain's wines are incredibly singular and full of life, as if the grapes were still dangling on the vines. He is a man who has never betrayed his belief that natural production is the only way to capture the essence of his grapes and terroir. Even in the early days when natural wine was rejected as poor quality, Alain was unwavering. His dedication has, over the years, earned him a very passionate following.
His 2019 Tir a Blanc is direct press of Macabeu, Carignan Blanc, Grenache Blanc, Bourboulenc, Clairette and Muscat d'Alexandrie. Whoa. Fermentation and affinage in stainless steel. No additions whatsoever. This is a vivid, Mediterranean wine scintillating with fresh fruits, florals and minerals. Impossibly bright and fresh, it drinks like a fountain of youth.
Variety Macabeu, Carignan Blanc, Grenache Blanc, Bourboulenc, Clairette, Muscat d'Alexandrie || Region Languedoc-Roussillon, France || ABV 12% || Vol 750ml