Aromas of red currant, raspberry and lemon zest. Dry, but with a touch of red berry and red licorice sweetness. There’s a marvelous salinity to go with the fresh acidity and tangier citrus notes on the medium length finish. Chill lightly and enjoy with anchovy and olive tapenade, shrimp tempura or a picnic lunch.
Cinsault-Grenache blends are made up of two important grape varieties from southern France and are vinified as either red or rosé wines. Grenache is herbaceous and spicy, with plenty of berry fruit flavours. It has ample tannins and usually reasonably high alcohol, as it is often grown in hot environments. Cinsault, on the other hand, lacks structure, colour and tannin and is usually employed to give an aromatic lift to the wine. These blends are permitted in a wide range of appellations in southern France, from Châteauneuf-du-Pape to the simple IGP wines of the area. Perhaps the blend’s most important expression is in the fresh, fruit-driven rosé wines of the Côtes de Provence appellation in southeastern France.
Côtes de Provence La Londe is located on the coast between Toulon and Saint-Tropez. The proximity of the nearby Mediterranean keeps the climate temperate all year round, with adequate rainfall levels during the growing season. There is a noticeable diurnal shift, allowing the grapes to cool in the evenings while the breezes off the sea slow ripening during the hottest part of the summer. The soils are metamorphic schist, similar to slate, with varying levels of sand, quartzite and sandstone. The wines of the area are frequently marked by minerality and salinity. Wine has been produced in Côtes de Provence for over 2600 years, making Provence the oldest wine producing region of France. Despite the large number of plantings of black grape varieties, rosé and white wines account for the majority of bottlings in the region.
Grapes for Le Caprice are sourced from around the Côtes de Provence La Londe region, where independent growers work their vineyards according to Chateau les Valentines’ rigorous specifications. Root stocks here sit on a bed of schist overlain with quartzite and sand. These wines have noticeable minerality and primary fruit notes.
Hand-harvested in the early morning to avoid the heat of the day. Direct pressed off the skins, with only the briefest of contact, similar to most white wines. Fermentation in temperature-controlled stainless steel vats in order to preserve primary fruit and freshness. Racked off the lees and left to age in tank for a year before bottling.
Situated in one of the most beautiful places on earth, just a few miles from St. Tropez on the French Mediterranean, Château Les Valentines is located inside the Côtes de Provence La Londe AOC, considered the “Grand Cru” site for rosé wine in France. Close proximity to the ocean mitigates the hot summer days, as does the Mistral wind that comes howling down from the Rhône to empty out into the ocean. This allows the grapes to retain their acidity while still ripening the Grenache, Cinsault and Syrah that form the backbone of Les Valentines’ gutsy reds and beautifully-structured rosés. The winery also produces fresh whites from Ugni Blanc, Clairette and aromatic Vermentino. There are few regions that take their rosé wines as seriously as Provence does. These are from low-yielding vineyards earmarked specifically for optimal rosé wine, not simply bled off vats of red wine. The quintessential summer sipper, but with more than enough weight and character to be enjoyed all year round. Château Les Valentines has vineyards that have been growing grapes for over a century. They sold their harvest to a local cooperative before finally opening their own winery in 1997. Since then, their wines have accrued international recognition and are served in some of the finest hotels and restaurants in the world. These extremely small-batch wines come with tremendous pedigree, but are incredibly affordable as well! Gorgeously-styled bottles make a stunning presentation, but the wine inside more than delivers.