This has always been a somewhat conundrum of a wine for me. With is boldness and gentle flavours, it has been hard for me to determine how to push this unassuming bottle. Looking at its relatively moderate history, it still doesn’t over bore in the mind. So how can you single this particular wine out for an entire article to describe the its star quality? That’s easy, the wine is quite simply divine!
The Chateau Mourgues du Gres is the quintessential picture postcard of a vineyard, high steep slopes that can only be harvested by hand. From the very top of the vineyard, Mount Ventoux and its 15th century chapel is visible, as I’m sure is the winning spirit, hysteria and, equally, the heartache of many Tour de France riders.
Close to the ancient city of Nimes, almost entirely central to the wonderful win regions of Languedoc and Provence is Costieres du Nimes and the vineyard of Chateau Mourgues du Gres. Where they create the truly incredible Galets Dores. The farm itself once belonged to a convent of nuns with the wines name, Mourgues, was once the name for the Ursuline nuns of the Provence region. Naming a vineyard and a wine never seemed as apt as this does.
I can only assume that this wine, Dores Galets, is created and specifically unique due to the micro-climate it originates from. This vineyard tragically suffers from all year sunshine due to its perfect location which can only help the grapes reach their absolute perfect ripeness if harvested at the exact right time. Anne and Francois Collard are clearly masters of their craft and are clearly able to pinpoint with diamond precision that perfect, optimum time from the deep rooted vines, in calcareous clay and limestone soils, will provide thier annual gifts. The reward if you like for a year of careful an blissful attention and co-existance.
The wine itself is illustriously made from a collective of grapes including grenache blanc, roussanne, vermentino and a tiny amount of clairette for good measure. This amalgamation of grapes are vinified in stainless steel with the Roussanne aged on the lees. This allows the grapes natural flavour to shine through, similarly to the all year sunshine they so greatly benefit from. There is no yeasts added to this either during fermentation and everything is kept at controlled temperatures to keep the divine freshness. The is then very lightly filtered using only natural methods making this wine friendly for a vegan and gluten free diet.
But what of this wine? Well what is there to say of this wine, this wine is just delicious. It’s simple, straight forward, if not almost mundane packaging, does not do this wine justice. The only saving grace there is the clear bottle that allows the gleaming and gorgeous colour to shine through and catch the eye of even the most discerning wine aficionado.
What I love about this wine, quite simply is its unassuming nature that just sucks you in and makes you fall in love. The floral aromas of orchids, mingles exceedingly well with the citrus tones. On the palate this wine is crisp and fresh, yet feels fuller, and seamlessly merges with the delicacy of the stone and orchard fruits, that finishes with a delightful finish of minerals that feels almost like charcoal.
Why is this wine a conundrum? It shouldn’t feel crisp, with its golden yellow colour, it shouldn’t feel so full, with its mineral finish. What that does make this wine, in our eyes, is simply star quality.