I have over the last few weeks enjoyed a grape varietal that is not so well known in the UK as a single variety. It is has been used over the years as a grape to blend with others, notably with the Cabernet Sauvignon grape to give a Ruby Cabernet wine, which you may have come across.
Quite why I have enjoyed the Carignan (KA Re nyan) is very simple, the sheer pleasure comes from the older vines (Vieilles Vignes). These display purity of flavour from small parcels of terroir which penetrate deep, drawing the maximum flavour possible, in the warm Pays D’Herault region of the South of France.
“On the palate, your senses are awakened by soft dry, red berry fruit.”
When tasting the Mont Rocher, Carignan, Vieilles Vignes, 2009 at 12.5% vol, your senses really come to life. Your eyes are delighted with deep crimson red colour, and you can breath in wonderful floral aromas and spiciness. On the palate, your senses are awakened by soft dry, red berry fruit.
Another reason to enjoy this Carignan wine is the sheer range of food dishes it accompanies, such as beef stew, stir fry beef, Tandoori chicken, Thai green chicken curry or with just a selection of cheeses and dry biscuits. I did try it slightly chilled, but much preferred a warmer temperature around 57f/14c. It would be just fine, of course to drink on its own without food.
As with most pleasures in life, it is better to share. I hope it works for you.
Rodney Hogg has been a well-known figure in the wine industry for over 30 years, particularly in Northamptonshire. He is available for tastings and consultations with both restaurant and corporate clients. He is also on hand to advise private clients on case or mixed case purchases for their home use.