The Languedoc is home to some cracking wines at the moment. And really great value ones too, especially compared to the all-too-often-overpriced wines of Bordeaux, Burgundy and the Rhône.
Domaine de la Jasse is one of the region’s leading estates and when we offered some 2012 Domaine de la Jasse ‘Black Label’ Tête de Cuvée Rouge last year it fair flew out the door, so tasty and – importantly – so tastily priced was it. This time we’ve gone one better, well, actually two better, with not only the most recent vintage of the Tête de Cuvée Rouge but the current white and rosé too.
Domaine de la Jasse lies some 15 km from Montpellier in the heart of the Languedoc, its name coming from the shelter and the shade (known in the local dialect as jasse) provided by the estate’s century-old plane tree. Climate and terroir are both near perfect here and winemakers Bruno le Breton and Patrick Léon (formerly of Château Mouton-Rothschild) are producing some delightful wines.
The 2015 Domaine de la Jasse Blanc de Blancs is a quirky blend of 65 per cent Chardonnay and 35 per cent Viognier that one’s unlikely to encounter outside the Languedoc. Fresh, citrusy, creamy with hints of honey, melon and peach, it’s fruity in the mouth but dry on the finish and pretty much a perfect drinks-on-the-lawn wine. £9.50 a bottle.
The 2015 Domaine de la Jasse ‘Coeur de Cuvée’ Rosé is similarly toothsome being a blend of Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Grenache. Patrick Léon will be familiar to eagle-eyed Spectator readers as partner to Sacha Lichine at the exclusively rosé-producing Château d’Esclans in Provence (whose wines we offered recently) and his expertise shows. The wine is wonderfully fresh but with a welcome touch of sophisticated weight to it too. It’s soft and smooth with plenty of ripe wild strawberry and even peach on the palate. £9.50 a bottle.
Finally, the mighty 2013 Domaine de la Jasse ‘Black Label’ Tête de Cuvée Rouge made from 100 per cent old-vine Cabernet Sauvignon, matured for 12–16 months in French oak. There are buckets of fleshy, ripe blackcurrant and blackberry fruit here with plums, damsons, chocolate, vanilla, liquorice and spice. 2013 was a fabulous vintage and although there are tannins the fruit is so succulent that one barely notices them, least of all with food. £11.50 a bottle.
Mark Cronshaw of The Wine Company has generously said that anyone buying two cases of 12 of red or three cases of 12 across the range with at least one of red will get a cockle-warming magnum of 2013 Domaine de la Jasse ‘Black Label’ Tête de Cuvée Rouge worth £34. Oh, and don’t forget, delivery is free.
2015 Domaine de la Jasse Blanc de Blancs, 13%vol
2015 Domaine de la Jasse ‘Coeur de Cuvée’ Rosé, 13%vol
2013 Domaine de la Jasse ‘Black Label’ Tête de Cuvée, 14%vol