May 8, 2017

Calmel and Joseph Négociations de Vin

By In Exploring the Languedoc
I adore the wines of Calmel & Joseph; not only because the lip-staining Marselan is one of the Pays d’Oc IGP Gems Collection 2016. Two friends founded Calmel & Joseph in 1995. As a maison de négoce they specialise in sourcing wines from private wineries across the Languedoc-Roussillon region. A majority of their wines are sourced this way although right outside the former farmstead is a substantial tract of vines that they now own.

“Over the years, we have built close personal relationships with a large number of growers from all appellations. Convinced of the extraordinary potential of this region, oenologist, Laurent Calmel, and Jerome Joseph work together on the vinification, blending and ageing of wines with the common purpose of demonstrating the little known yet unique quality of these Mediterranean terroirs. As well as our desire to produce high quality wines consistent with their terroirs, we are committed to making wines which reflect our convictions and experience.”

We were here to taste their Vin de Pay’s d’Oc range, labelled Villa Blanche, (they produce other ranges too such as their Terroirs range offering wines from Faugeres, Minervois, Corbieres and so on). The Marsalan, selected for the Gems collection is a full-coloured, robust rendition. Marselan is a cross of Grenache Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon and quite unique to this area of France. It always produces deeply coloured wines with a lovely perfume. The Calmel & Jospeh Villa Blanche Chardonnay, a portion of which sees a little barrel aging, adding much to its depth and complexity, is super. The Villa Blanche Picpoul less to my taste with its piercing acidity but other tasters raved and talked of oysters and fresh seafood. The Sauvignon, refreshingly crisp and citrus led.

“Once a year different, each parcel and style changes, once its gone its gone.” Jérôme Joseph

Jérôme Joseph

Jérôme Joseph

Calmel and Joseph Négociations de Vin

Jérôme took us through the range. The Villa Blanche Grenache Rosé is made from a parcel of Grenache Gris – none of your old n’ dull plain Grenache here – which “adds a little something special… distinctive” and not a wine only for an aperitif. Try with chicken, stuffed vegetables… “it loves aubergine!“.

If you love the Southern French style of Pinot Noir, the Villa Blanche Pinot Noir (listed by Waitrose) is well worth trying. Deep in colour, fine of aroma and palate full of red fruits, with touches of blackcurrant and spice. I was more taken by the elegant Villa Blanche Syrah. Deep purple in colour with a mass of blackcurrant and blackberry flavours enhanced by a sprinkling of spice. Jérôme mentioned flavours of truffles and gunflint.

Calmel & Jospeh are just a few minutes away from Carcassone. They have gites available for rent and plenty of wild country surrounding in which to walk, cycle or ride through. Hugely recommended. The Cellar Door shop is open for drop-by purchases.

Calmel & Joseph Négociations de Vin
Chemin de la Madone
11800 Montirat

“Spicy notes and a touch of cinnamon. The smooth palate is bursting with black fruit aromas and offers exceptional length. A lush wine to be savoured and enjoyed! Will appeal to lovers of this unusual varietal.” Calmel & Joseph on their Villa Blanche Marselan, selected for the Pays d’Oc IGP Gems Collection 2016.

Vineyards outside Calmel and Joseph

Vineyards outside Calmel and Joseph Négociations de Vin

Calmel and Joseph Négociations de Vin

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