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Domaine des Tourettes - a chosen few from us
In the sunlit hills of Lubéron, Maine and Jean-Marie Guffens-Heynen create this enticing red. From high-altitude, limestone-rich soils, this blend of Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Syrah reflects the true essence of southern France. With notes of red and black fruits and a hint of spice, this wine showcases the best of both the land and the Burgundian expertise behind it.
Château des Tourettes embodies a remarkable transformation journey. From a vineyard previously overshadowed by chemical misuse, it has flourished into an estate that spans 19 hectares, boasting a blend of both classic and unique varietals. Presently, 15 hectares of these vines are almost evenly divided between white grapes—like Chardonnay, Roussanne, Marsanne, and Viognier—and reds, including Syrah, Grenache, and Cabernet-Sauvignon.
Nestled within a national preserve, the estate is a harmonious blend of wildflowers, ancient vines, and olive groves, epitomising the soul of southern France. Positioned at 400m elevation, and with some plots reaching the heights of the notable Plateau de l'Aigle, the vineyard reaps the benefits of a distinct microclimate. This altitude ensures the wines retain a freshness, harmonising with the lush ripeness that the sun-bathed region naturally imparts.
Drawing inspiration from Burgundian practices, the cellar adopts a meticulous approach. Post-harvest, only the finest juices are selected, ensuring inherent acidity and character. The wines age for 8 months in barrels, with a quarter being new, followed by another 10 months on fine lees, adding layers of depth.
The winery resonates with a Burgundian touch, employing modified vertical presses, concrete tanks, and barrels borrowed from Verget. Each wine, following natural yeast fermentation, is aged in a mix of cement eggs, stainless steel tanks, and barrels.
By strategically choosing the Vin de France denomination over the AOC, they harness the creative freedom to craft wines that mirror their vision and the region's distinct character.
Whites: Chardonnay, Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier
Reds: Cabernet Franc, Grenache Noir, Syrah
"Guffens’ mastery of technique is complete, but he is not a technical winemaker: it is his aesthetic, not his methods, which indelibly marks his wines. Forty years ago, no one would have imagined that the Mâconnais could produce wines which approach so nearly the apotheosis of Chardonnay, and as Guffens enters his seventh decade, he believes he’s doing the best work of his career. It’s time for the world to rediscover him."
William Kelley - Rebel Aesthetic: the wines of Jean-Marie Guffens
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