Hecht & Bannier Cotes du Roussillon Villages 2009
Other Red Blends from Languedoc-Roussillon, France
2009 brings to us a rich and very expressive wine. Quickly accessible, the sensual, soft, round and smooth Grenache sides offer to us an immediate pleasure in mouth. Aromatically full, sapid and cheerful, our Côtes du Roussillon Villages 2009 shows a spicy and peppery side for a voluptuous wine, obvious.
The Wine Advocate - "Chocolate-covered plum and cherry; cassis and blackberry headily scent and lushly saturate the plush palate of Hecht & Bannier's 2009 Cotes du Roussillon Villages a less complex or dynamic wine - tasted from tank just prior to bottling - than its 2008 counterpart (which was a hard act to follow by any measure) but with a seductive richness all its own. Nor is this simply about fruit: a deep red meatiness and saliva-inducing salinity permeate the palate and add the finishing enticement to take the next sip. The small amount of Mourvedre present here seems surprisingly efficacious. Look for this excellent value to reward for the next 4-6 years.
Hecht & Bannier Winery
Formed in 2002, Hecht & Bannier makes wines intended to become reference points for the Languedoc-Roussillon, France’s largest and most confounding winemaking region. Founders Gregory Hecht and François Bannier: "To conserve the typical Mediterranean strength in our wines while preserving balance and crispness, this is our mantra for all the appellations we produce." View all Hecht & Bannier Wines
About Languedoc-RoussillonView a map of Languedoc-Roussillon wineries (LAHN-guh-dock) (ROO-see-yohn) France. The region stretches along the land above the Mediterranean, bordered by the Rhone river on the east and almost reaching Spain on the west. Only 10% of the wines from the area are AC, with the remaining wines often landing in the Vin de Pays or Vin de Table category. Wines in the Vin de Pays category are classified here as Vin de Pays d'Oc.
Notable Facts80% of the wines here are red. The grapes of the neighboring Rhone region are popular, with the focus on Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Cinsaut and to a lesser extent, Carignan. White grapes include Rousanne, Marsanne, Clairette and other white Rhone varieties. Parts of the region are also enjoying success with international varieties like Merlot, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. For many of these international style wines, you'll see the grape variety on the label – very un-French, but since they qualify as Vin de Pays d'Oc, it's allowed. Not so for the AC wines of the region, which are relegated to using most of the regional varieties and labeling their bottles by region. Appellations in the Languedoc include Corbières, Minervois, Costières de Nimes, Banyuls and the largest of them all, Coteaux de Languedoc. Corbières and Minervois are found on the western side of the region and produce sometimes very concentrated red wines. Costières de Nimes lies just southwest of the Rhone and produces wines of comparable character. Banyuls creates decadent fortified wines with Grenache and Coteaux de Langeudoc does triple duty, using international and regional grapes to produce white, red and rose wines that are often fantastic values.
RoussillonA region located between the Spanish border and Languedoc, Roussillon is often mentioned in conjunction with Languedoc, but is an entirely separate, albeit smaller, area. Producing white, red and rose wines, Roussillon is in the Catalonia region, which bleeds into Spain and France. The area has equal amount of Spanish influence as it does French. It is most well-known for Banyuls, a potent dessert wine made from concentrated old-vine Grenache. Vines are old and planted on steep, rocky, terraced hillsides overlooking the coast. The region is also making still wines, mostly from Grenache but with a good amount of Carignan as well.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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