The Edinburgh Wine Club 


March 20, 2014







Ranking 1-3 and Best Value

1. Domaine de Simonet, Bourboulenc 2012

IGP Coteaux de Narbonne;

Terres de Perignan


Wine Society


Unusual agricultural nose from the ancient grape of Berboulenc. On palate clean, fresh, dry, light, good fruit acidity and lingering. Also saltiness, seaweed, and iodine, perhaps reflecting its maritime location on the limestone hill of La Clape, a former island just into the next Département of the Aude.


2.  Domaine Felines Jourdan,

Picpoul de Pinet




Picpoul de Pinet

Picpoul de Pinet

Wine Society


Had a more pronounced nose than the Berboulenc, and a lot on the tastebuds too with a long aftertaste. Dry, quite acidic, lemon sherbet palate. No marine notes here despite location near the Bassin de Thau. Until recently most of these grapes went into vermouth.

3rd equal. Best white equal. Best value equal.

3. Le Vent du Nord,




Pays d’Oc





Rich floral/citrus/limeflower nose. Zesty lemon palate, good with food. But for some the palate did not live up to the richness of the nose, finishing rather shorter than expected given the chardonnay. From a beautiful chateau on the edge of the village of Servian.

4. Marsanne Reserve

La Forge Estate


Pays d’Oc


David Henderson


Similar nose to Wine 3, but bigger and more robust palate. Marzipan at first on the palate, ending in burnt sugar. Dates and raisins, but not sweet. Marzipan notes develop the longer it is in the glass. Most of  the Estate’s grapes are from in and around Pézenas, with some from Limoux on the Aude.

5. Domaine de l’Arjolle 2010,


IGP Cotes de Thongue

50% Cabernet Sauvignon/50% Merlot

Wine Society



Lovely nose – red fruit, raspberries, spice. Sweet on the nose. A touch of sweetness in the mouth, but fruit acidity in the middle palate. Fruity, marzipan, full of sunshine. Delicate but pronounced tannins. From the charming village of Pouzolles.

3rd equal. Best value equal.

6. Nos Racines,

Chateau la Liquière,


AOC Faugères

95% Carignan; 5% Grenache

Wine Society


Cedar/cigar box/tobacco nose. Heavier and more tannic than the previous wine. Plums, figgy pudding, dates. Also notes of fennel and a mineral quality. Still young – the 2010 tasted three months earlier was much softer. From one hundred year old carignan vines grown on the garrigue-covered schist. Missed a place by one point.

7. Chateau de Combebelle, 2007


St Chinian

70% Syrah;

30% Grenache

Waitrose On-line


Fine example of St Chinian with lovely, expressive bouquet of dark fruits of forest. Subtle balance of fruit and acidity. Light tannins. Cherries, richness. Superb long aftertaste. Sour plums, hint of pepper. Classic food wine – would enhance rather than overpower as the Faugeres would. Grown on some of the highest land in the appellation, and even the 2007 still young enough to benefit from decanting. Missed a place by one point.

8. Maximiana 2008

AOC Minervois la Livinière

“Syrah based”



Very powerful bouquet, despite being decanted for several hours. Palate was less exceptional than bouquet, but elegant and well-balanced. Lovely soft fruits, with tannins quite pronounced. This appellation is the “cru” of the Minervois.

3rd equal.

9. Chateau d’Anglès       Classique 2009

AOC Languedoc La Clape

Syrah (40%), Grenache (40%), Mourvedre (20%)



Very intense bouquet - very herby. Beautifully rounded and smooth in the mouth - restrained elegance. Herby aftertaste. Degree of sweetness on the palate offset by a slight bitterness –bitter almonds, seaweed, iodine (as in the Berboulenc, also from La Clape). Also ginger. Multi-layered, and keeps going for a long time. The wine-maker’s skills were developed at Chateau Lafite, but using Rhone grapes here.


10. Domaine de Barrubio 2012

AOC Muscat de St-Jean de Minervois

Muscat à petits grains

Wine Society


Superb! Honey, smooth, non-cloying. A few herbs in the fruity syrup too, such as coriander, and wild flowers, such as lady’s smock. Similar to Corsican Muscat de Cap, but smoother. Went well with un petit macaron. Grown at 300 metres on an outcrop of blindingly white limestone.

1st.                     Best white equal.