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Domaine Lafage Cuvee Centenaire Blanc 2011

Other White Blends from France
  • RP92
0% ABV
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4.3 3 Ratings
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4.3 3 Ratings
0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The name "Centenaire" refers to how the age of vines for this wine are 100+ years old. This wine come from of the most sought-after winemakers of Europe at the moment, Jean-Marc Lafage, lends his expertise with Southern European varietals to several top estates in both France and Spain.

Blend: 80% Grenache Blanc/Grenache Gris, 20% Roussane

Critical Acclaim

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RP 92
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2011 Cuvee Centenaire is another intriguing blend that demonstrates the brilliance of Eric Solomon in finding wines of such high quality that are priced remarkably low. It is composed of 80% Grenache Blanc and Grenache Gris (the latter grape is rarely seen) blended with 20% Roussanne, and aged in both stainless steel (70%) and new French oak (30%). The Grenache vines, which are over 100 years of age, are planted within sight of the Mediterranean Sea. Lots of wet gravel, crushed rock, honeysuckle, acacia flower, quince and white currant notes give this wine a character that could easily be mistaken as a serious white Hermitage from the northern Rhone. Perhaps it's the wine’s minerality or power and richness. This evolved, medium gold-colored effort offers fresh, full-throttle flavors that would marry beautifully with intensely flavored fish dishes, saffron-laced seafood soups, or shellfish.
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Domaine Lafage

Domaine Lafage

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Domaine Lafage, , France - Other regions
Domaine Lafage
Although only in his thirties, Jean-Marc Lafage already has almost 15 years of worldclass winemaking behind him. One of the most sought-after winemakers of Europe at the moment, Jean-Marc lends his expertise with Southern European varietals to several top estates in both France and Spain (he makes Las Rocas Garnacha with Eric Solomon) and also in South America. However, his best work is perhaps at home at his estate in the hills of the Roussillon with his wife, also an accomplished winemaker.

As the varietals come from different parcels all around the Eastern and Central Roussillon, they are always vinified separately, and then blended before bottling. The whites never pass through malolactic and the property always searches for freshness and expressive aromas in the blends. The reds can often show off a mineral component as Jean-Marc does not favor heavy extraction. Yields are amazingly low for wines at this price level. The wines are bottled unfiltered.

Central Coast

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The largest and perhaps most varied of California’s wine-growing regions, the Central Coast produces the majority of the state's wine. The sprawling district covers most of the vineyard land between San Francisco and Santa Barbara from the coast inland nearly all the way to the Central Valley. Encompassing an extremely diverse array of climates, soil types, and wine styles, it contains many smaller sub-AVAs, including Monterey, Paso Robles, Santa Ynez Valley, Santa Maria Valley, and Santa Cruz Mountains.

Just about every major international grape variety is planted within this vast AVA, from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay to Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel. A significant proportion of the region’s produce is generic, inexpensive bulk wine, but the Central Coast is also home to many small, artisanal wineries crafting unique, high-quality wines, as well as everything in between.

Chardonnay

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One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it’s grown and how it’s made. In Burgundy, Chardonnay produces some of the finest white wines in the world, typically tending towards minimal intervention in the winery and at its best resulting in remarkable longevity. This grape is popular throughout the world, but perhaps its second most important home is in California, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia, South America, South Africa, and New Zealand are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

In the Glass

When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay’s flavors tend towards grapefruit, green apple, minerals, and white stone fruit, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of fig, melon, and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut, and spice (as well as texture), while malolactic fermentation can impart soft, buttery acidity.

Perfect Pairings

Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with simple seafood, light chicken dishes, and salads. Richer Chardonnays marry well with cream or oil-based sauces.

Sommelier Secret

Since the 1990s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has begun to swing in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. These Old-World style wines have been dubbed the “New California Chardonnays,” and anyone who claims they do not like Chardonnay should give them a try.

SWS320182_2011 Item# 122075

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