10 Years of WineLab August 21, 2023
FLC May 2023 - Vive le Vin! June 05, 2023
First Look Club
FLC May 2023 - Vive le Vin!
This May, we are featuring wines from one of the most renowned winemaking countries of all time – France. French wine accounts for about 35% of wine in the Irish market, so we think it’s safe to say that many of us have enjoyed a bottle or two of French wine! For many wine drinkers and enthusiasts, French wine is where their wine education started. It’s the benchmark for the global wine market, and the wine world is dominated by grapes that are native to France. Can you imagine wine without Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc, Malbec, or Merlot? French winemaking, culture, and pride in the appellation system have had an irreversible influence on the way the world drinks wine.
Château La Coste is a stunning winery located in the heart of the Provence region in France. Provence wine is most widely recognised for its pale, crisp rosé, but it has much more to offer! Vibrant, full whites and rich, robust reds showcase Southern Rhône’s influence on Provence.
This month’s featured wine ‘Le Rouge’, is a blend of Syrah, Grenache and Cabernet Sauvignon. The vines are located on the hillsides of the picturesque Aix-en-Provence, where the soils are rich with clay and limestone. These soils are crucial for the hot summers of southern France. The clay absorbs any rain, keeping vines suitably hydrated, whereas the limestone drains any excessive amounts of rain. This balance is important for vines – you need them to get enough sun, warmth, and water to ripen, but not over-watered as this essentially dilutes the grapes’ potential.
The grapes are gently pressed with a relatively short period on the skins. The wine is fermented at low temperatures in stainless steel vats. The goal is to keep the wine’s fruit profile front and center, with soft, supple tannins. ‘Le Rouge’ is a summery style of red wine and works well when served chilled. It’s very easy-going with food pairing – suitable for light snacks and sharing plates, or to be accompanied with a meal.
The winery itself is housed in a stunning contemporary building that was designed by French architect Jean Nouvel. The building features a striking red facade that perfectly complements the surrounding vineyards. Chateau la Coste have sought to create a truly unique experience for those visiting the winery. In addition to tasting the estate’s wines, you can also enjoy a fine meal at one of their restaurants and look at art works from some of the world's most renowned artists, including Bob Dylan, Park Seo Bo, Sean Scully, and Ai Weiwei. If this all sounds like enough to keep you busy for the day, you can even book accommodation for the evening.