Quantities extremely limited, 4 bottles max per purchase
Jurançon's prestigious moelleux were prized throughout history and famously lauded by Colette for having "seductive" properties. Indeed, this bottling is all about the ravishing finesse of late-harvested fruit dried on the vine. It drinks more like a demi-sec, however, thanks to its electric acidity—try it with foie gras, cheeses, or simply as an enlivening apéritif. Or, cellar it and let yourself be seduced in several years' time!
We are thrilled to introduce this tiny, family-run Jurançon specialist to the U.S.—a domaine whose pristine, saline whites exceeded our wildest dreams about what could be done in this fascinating little pocket of southwest France. Situated in the commune of Gan, just south of Pau in the shadow of the Pyrenees, Clos Larrouyat enjoys the unique climate that characterizes the vineyards of Jurançon: a combination of mountain freshness with meridional warmth, gently mediated by an oceanic influence from the nearby Atlantic. The landscape is lush and green thanks to the plentiful rainfall, while warm autumns featuring drying southerly foehn winds allow for the late harvests necessary to produce the region’s prestigious moelleux, prized throughout history and famously lauded by Colette for its seductive properties.
Tucked away beneath Bordeaux and buffeted by the Pyrenees to the south, this expansive region of France, commonly known as the Southwest, is home to a diverse number of viticulture and gastronomic traditions as well as cultures. Though Cahors might be the most well known (and easiest to pronounce) appellation from the Southwest, the importance and influence of French Basque culture cannot be underestimated. Irouléguy, the primary appellation of the Basque region of France produces full-bodied, hearty red wines, produced from Tannat grape (known for its tannic qualities). Dry whites from Irouléguy are also produced from Petit and Gros Manseng. Northeast of Irouléguy is the sweet wine-producing appellation of Jurançon. These moelleux wines made from Petit and Gros Manseng have a storied history in France, from being the first wine region to have a vineyard classification, which dates back to the 154th century, to being preferred wine of royalty dating back to the 16th century as well as the French poet Colette.
Trust the great winemakers, trust the great vineyards. Your wine merchant might even be trustworthy. In the long run, that vintage strip may be the least important guide to quality on your bottle of wine.—Kermit Lynch
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