Mas Amiel Millesime 1980
Situated at the foot of the Pyrenees, the 170 hectares of vines at Mas Amiel are divided into 130 parcels, extending throughout the heart of the scrubland, wild plants and shrubs. When Olivier Decelle discovered this exceptional location in 1999, he decided to set the objective of making great wines.
Mas Amiel has always produced highly regarded sweet wines. The aim has been that of improving upon the vineyard’s standard of quality to establish Mas Amiel as an internationally renowned wine estate. The other challenge has been that of creating great dry wines in a region that decided to limit its production in the 1950s. But its great terroir is still present. Mas Amiel’s strength resides in the richness and diversity of its terroir.
An extensive appellation producing a diverse selection of good quality and great values, Languedoc spans the Mediterranean coast from the Pyrenees mountains of Roussillon all the way to the Rhône Valley. Languedoc’s terrain is generally flat coastal plains, with a warm Mediterranean climate and frequent risk of drought.
Virtually every style of wine is made in this expansive region. Most dry wines are blends with varietal choice strongly influenced by the neighboring Rhône Valley. For reds and rosés, the primary grapes include Grenache, Syrah, Carignan, Cinsault and Mourvèdre. White varieties include Grenache Blanc, Muscat, Ugni Blanc, Vermentino, Macabéo, Clairette, Piquepoul and Bourbelenc.
International varieties are also planted in large numbers here, in particular Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon.
The key region for sparkling wines here is Limoux, where Blanquette de Limoux is believed to have been the first sparkling wine made in France, even before Champagne. Crémant de Limoux is produced in a more modern style.
Grenache thrives in any warm, Mediterranean climate where ample sunlight allows its clusters to achieve full phenolic ripeness. While Grenache's birthplace is Spain (there called Garnacha), today it is more recognized as the key player in the red blends of the Southern Rhône, namely Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Côtes du Rhône and its villages. Somm Secret—The Italian island of Sardinia produces bold, rustic, single varietal Grenache (there called Cannonau). California, Washington and Australia have achieved found success with Grenache, both flying solo and in blends.