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2014 Faugères “Jadis”

Domaine Léon Barral

2014 Faugères “Jadis” Domaine Léon Barral - Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant

Didier Barral is focused above all else on typicity. He wants his wine to taste like it came from his vineyards in the schist-ridden hills of Lentheric, and he will try anything to accomplish this goal, as long as it doesn’t involve adding man-made chemicals, pesticides, or fertilizers to his soil. The Marcel Lapierre of the south, Didier produces wine that contains nothing but the fruit harvested ripe from his old vines planted in his stony yet fertile soil. Earthy, meaty, savory, juicy, and powerful, it is a glassful of joyful, soulful goodness. Barral’s is a signature that cannot be mistaken.

Dixon Brooke

Vintage: 2014
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: 50% Carignan, 30% Syrah, 20% Grenache
Appellation: Faugères
Country: France
Region: Languedoc-Roussillon
Producer: Domaine Léon Barral
Winemaker: Didier Barral
Vineyard: 30 to 60 years, 10 ha
Soil: Schist
Aging: Aged for 24 to 26 months in barrel (10% new oak)
Farming: Biodynamic (practicing)
Alcohol: 14%

More from this Producer or Region

About Languedoc-Roussillon

Ask wine drinkers around the world, and the word “Languedoc” is sure to elicit mixed reactions. On the one hand, the region is still strongly tied to its past as a producer of cheap, insipid bulk wine in the eyes of many consumers. On the other hand, it is the source of countless great values providing affordable everyday pleasure, with an increasing number of higher-end wines capable of rivaling the best from other parts of France.

While there’s no denying the Languedoc’s checkered history, the last two decades have seen a noticeable shift to fine wine, with an emphasis on terroir. Ambitious growers have sought out vineyard sites with poor, well draining soils in hilly zones, curbed back on irrigation and the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, and looked to balance traditional production methods with technological advancements to craft wines with elegance, balance, and a clear sense of place. Today, the overall quality and variety of wines being made in the Languedoc is as high as ever.

Shaped like a crescent hugging the Mediterranean coast, the region boasts an enormous variety of soil types and microclimates depending on elevation, exposition, and relative distance from the coastline and the cooler foothills farther inland. While the warm Mediterranean climate is conducive to the production of reds, there are world-class whites and rosés to be found as well, along with stunning dessert wines revered by connoisseurs for centuries.

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Every three or four months I would send my clients a cheaply made list of my inventory, but it began to dawn on me that business did not pick up afterwards. It occurred to me that my clientele might not know what Château Grillet is, either. One month in 1974 I had an especially esoteric collection of wines arriving, so I decided to put a short explanation about each wine into my price list, to try and let my clients know what to expect when they uncorked a bottle. The day after I mailed that brochure, people showed up at the shop, and that is how these little propaganda pieces for fine wine were born.—Kermit Lynch

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