Gautoul Cahors 2005
Malbec from France
Chateau Gautoul is a deeply colored, generous wine with ripe tannins and ample body. Its accessible flavors of cassis, blackberry, truffles and spice make it a great expression of its unique and venerable appellation.
Wine Enthusiast - "Impressive wine, perfectly balancing its tannins and its stylish medicinal and herbal fruit flavors. It’s juicy, with mouthfilling black currant flavors. A wine to age for several years, but likely to be drinkable, with softer tannins, in 2012."
The "pays de Quercy" is known for the bridge in Cahors Valentré, imposing fortified bridge spanning the Lot, but also to the antiquity of its wine history. The wines of Cahors existed since the sixth century, and were offered for sale at auction in London in 1225. The Chateau Gautoul is a beautiful seventeenth century-style chateau in perfect condition and has retained its authenticity. It offers breathtaking views of the village of Puy l'Eveque and the lot. The south-facing vineyard of clay and limestone soil makes it perfect for the maturity of the grapes typical of the controlled Cahors appellation. View all Gautoul Wines
About Other French
Vin de Pays(vahn duh peh-YEE)
One of the lower levels in the French Classification system, Vin de Pays is an intermediary wine, created for vineyards who were not quite AC, but vastly superior to Vin de Table wine. Vin de Pays has restrictions similar to the AC, but on a lesser scale. Regulations include specified region, minimum alcohol level and grape varieties. The wine also goes through a tasting panel. Some winemakers able to make wine at an AC level, instead choose to create wine at the Vin de Pays level as it allows more flexibility in grape varieties and yields. There are five regional Vin de Pays, with the most popular being Vin Pays d'Oc (from Languedoc & Roussillon). Vin de Pays wines offer wonderful value and good wine finds.
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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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.