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Cosse et Maisonneuve Cahors Solis Malbec 2011

Malbec from Cahors, Southwest, France
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    Winemaker Notes

    Cosse et Maissoneuve wines are not the norm for Cahors. The wines are full of fruit, but they are uncommonly elegant and round for Cahors, not at all the old school rustic style that people often associate with the typical style of Malbecs from the area.Through precise and accurate winemaking, Cosse et Maisonneuve yield elegant, smooth and aerial wines that truly express the terroir and that have an incredible ageing potential.

    Blend: 95% Malbec, 5% Merlot

    Critical Acclaim

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    Cosse et Maisonneuve

    Cosse et Maisonneuve

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    Cosse et Maisonneuve, Cahors, Southwest, France
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    Created in 1999, Domaine Cosse et Maisonneuve is the result of the combination of two talented oenologists and winemakers: Matthieu Cosse and Catherine Maisonneuve. Matthieu (winemaker) is a graduate of the Institute of Enology in Bordeaux, and Catherine (oenologist) holds a BTS viticulture and oenology in Blanquefort.

    15 years ago, they took over a 5 hectare estate in Prayssac, a short distance from Cahors, planted with old vines of Malbec and set out to make wines that are the antithesis of the rustic image of Cahors. Their very first vintage was a cuvée called Les Laquets, but they quickly expanded the range of their wines, creating separate cuvées to reflect the identity of the different terroirs of the estate.

    Today, their estate totals 17 hectares of vines planted predominantly with Malbec although there is a small amount of Merlot and Tannat. Their plots are situated in the optimal locations to produce the best Cahors – predominantly on the gravel and clay third terrace above the Lot river.

    They are certified organic by Ecocert although they farm their vineyards biodynamically and plan to become cerified by Demeter. Everything they do in the vineyard is done with the aim of attaining balanced soils which produce the best ripening conditions for the grapes in order to make harmonious, aromatically complex and precise wines. They consider that wine is the ambassador of a terroir, and a winemaker is the interpreter, thus to obtain perfect grapes that will clearly express the qualities of the Cahors terroir, everything in the vineyard must be natural.

    Within the Southwest of France, this is the one region outside of Argentina that is today almost exclusively dependent on Malbec. Locally the variety is called Cot, and makes a dense, earthy and black fruit dominant red wine. Both the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean both have a strong influence on the climate of this region.

    Known for its big, bold flavors and supple texture, Malbec is most famous for its runaway success in Argentina. However, the variety actually originates in Bordeaux, where it historically contributed color and tannin to blends but was susceptible to viticultural problems. After being nearly wiped out by a devastating frost in 1956, it was never significantly replanted, although it did flourish under the name Côt in nearby Cahors. Malbec was brought to Argentina in 1868 by a French agronomist who saw great potential for the variety in Mendoza’s hot, high-altitude landscape, but did not gain its current reputation as the national grape of Argentina until a surge in popularity in the late 20th century thanks to its easy-going drinkability.

    In the Glass

    Malbec typically expresses deep flavors of freshly turned earth, black fruits from berries to plums, and licorice, appropriately backed by dense, chewy tannins. In warmer, New World regions, such as Mendoza, it can be quite intense and often needs time to mellow before becoming drinkable. In the Old World, its rusticity shines, with aged examples showing dusty notes of leather and tobacco. The best examples in all regions often possess a beguiling bouquet of violets.

    Perfect Parings

    Malbec’s rustic character begs for flavorful dishes, like spicy grilled sausages or the classic cassoulet of France’s Southwest. South American iterations are best enjoyed as they would be in Argentina: with a thick, juicy steak.

    Sommelier Secret

    If you’re trying to please a crowd, Malbec is generally a safe bet. With its combination of bold flavors and soft tannins, it will appeal to basically anyone who enjoys red wine. Malbec also wins bonus points for affordability, as even the most inexpensive examples are often quite good.

    DNSSOLIS_2011 Item# 141979