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Domaine Zélige-Caravent

Domaine Zélige-Caravent - Ikebana, Pic Saint Loup, Languedoc, France (2020)

Domaine Zélige-Caravent - Ikebana, Pic Saint Loup, Languedoc, France (2020)

Regular price $53.00
Regular price Sale price $53.00
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Wild and elegant, perfumed, fresh and vivid, with incredible concentration. A touch of Brett aromas and slightly gamey - this is a bold wine but with freshness, herbal garrigue and firm structure.

REGION France > Languedoc > Pic Saint Loup 
GRAPE(S) Grenache, Syrah, 
FORMAT 750ml Bottle
ABV 13.5%
FEATURES Low Intervention, Biodynamic, Vegan-Friendly

The wild wines of Zélige Caravent reflect the warm, green, untamed landscape they come from.

Co-owners/partners/farmers/vignerons, Marie and Luc Michel fly WAY under the radar right on the north edge of Pic Saint-Loup – the most northern sub-appellation of the Languedoc, delineated (officially) just a few years ago in 2017 for its high-quality, distinctive wines in the more volume-driven landscape of the Languedoc.

A “zélige” is a tile-mosaic produced by Mediterranean artisans, which was the inspiration for Luc and Marie, whose patchwork of vineyards actually falls across the border of Pic Saint-Loup (so some of their wines are labelled as simply “Vin de France”). Overall, Pic Saint-Loup is 1,500 ha, of which 800 are planted to Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre and a small amount of Carignane and Cinsault.

The Zélige homestead is about 40km, as the crow flies, from the Mediterranean Sea, or a 30-minute drive from the coastal city of Montpellier. The climate is mediterranean verging on continental by the time you get to Pic Saint-Loup – it’s arguably the coolest, wettest sub-region of the Languedoc – with very warm summer days offset by the cold air that descends from the mountains at night, and lots of replenishing rainfall during the winter months.

Here, oak trees, pines, palms, cacti and herbs like rosemary and thyme grow wild together. A complex array of soils (limestone-dominant in various forms) rises into the sweeping peaks of two massifs that define the region: Montagne de l’Hortus (1,680 ft. above sea level) and Pic Saint-Loup, which the appellation is named after (over 2,100 ft. above sea level). Both are part of the larger Cevennes mountain range that runs across south-central France.

Marie and Luc Michel farm biodynamically. They originally received 3ha of organically-farmed vines from Luc’s grandparents in 2000; today, the patchwork of vineyards has expanded to a total of 15ha, comprised of 25 distinct plots. These vines are old – some as old as 100 years, and the average vine age is 50 years old – and are original plantings of Syrah, Carignane, Grenache, Cinsault, Mouvèdre and Alicante-Bouschet. A combination of elevation and incredibly low yields means that the grapes showcase exceptional concentration of flavour and structure. In the cellar, fermentation is completely spontaneous, and interventions are minimal – the wines are left to rest after fermentation, and receive only minimal sulphur at bottling.

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