Chateau de Lancyre Pic St. Loup Le Rose 2018
A big rose! Raspberry and pear aromas on the nose, with distinctive spicy, minty garrigue notes. Big, bold and firm on the palate, ending with a long, clean finish.
A rose for year round drinking! Excellent on its own, it is also a great food wine – pair with hearty salads, grilled vegetables, kebabs, stuffed tomatoes or charcuterie.
Pic Saint-Loup has justifiably garnered a reputation as the Languedoc's best wine district. Vineyards are 15 miles inland from the Mediterranean and are almost 2000 feet above sea level. Summer days are blazingly hot (103°F!), but night-time temperatures almost always drop to below 60°F - sometimes even below 50°F! Syrah (the principal grape in Pic Saint-Loup) is usually picked in early October, and not in late August, as it is in many Languedoc and Southern Rhône vineyards, so stylistically, the wines are closer to those of the Northern Rhône than their Southern Rhône counterparts (think Hermitage/Côte Rotie, not Chateauneuf-du-Pape).
Is Lancyre the top wine estate in the Languedoc? Probably not. But they are one of the best, and their wines sell for 1/3 to 1/2 of the price of wines from the top handful of Languedoc estates. Equally important are the facts that a wide range of wines are produced, and that they are produced in substantial enough quantities and are readily available in most markets. For savvy wine consumers, it doesn't get much better than this.
Pic Saint-Loup is defined by the Pic Saint-Loup Mountain in its center as well as Montagne de l’Hortus, a long ridge of Jurassic limestone rising over 2,000 feet some 15 miles inland from the Mediterranean. Elevated from the coastal plains, Pic Saint-Loup’s 1,000 hectares of vineyards on well-drained, limestone-based soils, are blessed with cooler nights, allowing low yields and grapes to fully ripen while retaining acidity. The region supports many different grape varieties since it is spread over a number of elevations and microclimates.
Approved only for reds and rosés, Pic Saint-Loup wines aim for complex, earthy elegance, and are worth putting down for a few years. The southern French trio Grenache, Syrah and Mourvédre must constitute 90% of the red blends. Cherry, plum and berry fruit pick up spicy, herbal overtones from the surrounding garrigue, giving the wines a great balance of power and delicacy. Pic St Loup rosés, often containing a good dollop of Mourvédre, show more grip and color than many southern French pinks; the best ones can age with grace for five years or more.
Whether it’s playful and fun or savory and serious, most rosé today is not your grandmother’s White Zinfandel, though that category remains strong. Pink wine has recently become quite trendy, and this time around it’s commonly quite dry. Since the pigment in red wines comes from keeping fermenting juice in contact with the grape skins for an extended period, it follows that a pink wine can be made using just a brief period of skin contact—usually just a couple of days. The resulting color depends on grape variety and winemaking style, ranging from pale salmon to deep magenta.