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2023 Vin de Pays du Mont Caume Rouge “Terre d’Ombre”

Domaine de Terrebrune
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In this rare cuvée, fruit from Terrebrune’s most recent plantings is bottled in its vibrant youth, after just a short passage in neutral foudres. It answers the question of what Mourvèdre grown in Bandol tastes like freshly plucked off the vine. A vivid purple color, it is akin to fresh-pressed wild berries and perfumed hints of flowers and pepper, without the dense, grippy tannin characteristic of a true Bandol made from older vines. Be sure to cool down the bottle a bit before generously splashing this deliciously smooth Provençal juice into your glass.

Anthony Lynch

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Technical Information
Wine Type: red
Vintage: 2023
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: 80% Mourvèdre, 10% Grenache, 10% Cinsault
Appellation: Vin de Pays du Mont Caume
Country: France
Region: Provence
Producer: Domaine de Terrebrune
Winemaker: Reynald Delille
Vineyard: 3 - 4 years
Soil: Limestone pebbles in brown clay, blue limestone bedrock, marl
Aging: Fermented in stainless steel, aged 5 months in foudre
Farming: Organic (certified)
Alcohol: 14%

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About The Region

Provence

map of Provence

There is perhaps no region more closely aligned with the history of Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant than Provence. While Kermit began his career as a Burgundy specialist, he soon fell in love with Provence and its wines, notably the legendary Bandols of Domaine Tempier, which he began importing in 1977. He later began living in the area part-time, returning frequently between tasting trips, and today he spends most of his time at his home just outside of Bandol.

Provence is thought to be France’s most ancient wine region, established when Greek settlers landed in the modern-day port city of Marseille in the 6th century BC. The conditions here are ideal for cultivation of the grapevine, with a hot, dry climate and a prevalence of poor, rocky soils, primarily limestone-based, suitable for vines and not much else. The ever-present southern sunshine as well as the mistral, a cold, drying wind from the northwest that helps keep the vines free of disease, are crucial elements of Provençal terroir. Wild herbs from the pervasive scrubland, called garrigue, and cooling saline breezes from the Mediterranean also contribute to the quality and character of wines in all three colors.

Provence is well known for its rosés, but red wines have always held importance here. The very best, such as those from Bandol, possess great depth and a capacity for long-term aging. The white wines, notably those of Cassis, offer weight balanced by a maritime freshness, making them ideal pairings for the local seafood. Mourvèdre reigns king for red grapes, supported mainly by Grenache and Cinsault, while Clairette, Marsanne, Rolle, and Ugni Blanc are the region’s principal white grapes.

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Vintage Chart

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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