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2017 Sentiers de Bagatelle Colline d’Assignan, St. Chinian Rouge,

£15.75 inc. VAT

If you think the name’s a bit of a mouthful well you wait till you try the wine – a mouthful of pure and elegant red fruit.

St. Chinian sits to the north west of Béziers in the heart of the Languedoc. The reds can offer some terrific value at all price points but Clos Bagatelle is a real jewel of the region and is a property that has produced wine for almost 400 years. The current owners (a brother and sister) are big advocates of sustainable farming and produce wines much more reliant on the terroir of the vineyard.

The Sentiers cuvée is produced from vines in the commune of Assignan that is at an altitude of 250m which helps give the wine its elegance. The blend is 50% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 20% Carignan and the wine is aged in large casks before bottling. Crunchy red fruit to begin with but with undertones of something darker and more spicey. After an hour or so the dark peppery fruit of the Syrah starts to come through and the wine really bulks up. This is a great example of some of the sophisticated reds being produced in the Languedoc these days and at just 13% alcohol it is perfect for a cheeky lunchtime glass with that duck confit you happen to have warming in the oven.

I can see me drinking quite a bit of this over Autumn, but in a responsible way of course…


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