Summer daze…Languedoc praise…and a wine shop that gets it!

Here in the dog days of August we cool off in the evening with an outdoor meal. The wine often includes Rosé or, when the fare commands, a summer red from the Languedoc. These are good reds for summer because they are not terribly bulky or muscular but they do offer something interesting in the way of flavors. The red grapes are typically a blend of grenache, syrah, mourverdre, carignane among others. And since SoCal is so much like SW France the fit seems natural. Best of all the wines meet our watershed criterion Рunder $20.
mascarlot-label.jpg2004 Mas Carlot Costieres des Nimes Les Enfants Terribles $12: You can read all about the wines from this 40,000 case producer at their website, but you cannot read about this wine there. You have to buy the bottle or do your library reading in the wine shop – in this case local vendor supreme Woodland Hills Wine Co. Turns out the cuv√©e is a blend of old-vine Mourverdre and Syrah “Created by the winemaker, her hubby and Mr. Bobby Kacher. Robert Kacher is a primo importer who is a member of the virtual guild of select importers living the dream, traveling through Europe and discovering great wines which they import to the USA. Need an entry soon on this guild, I can tell. I am going to bet the majority grape is Mourverdre. Flavor profile is different from Syrah. Instead of deep fruit there is more bottom. That’s right, I said bottom. Like an ample tuchus, think bubble booty. Flavors are more restrained. Plums. Tannins are mild to moderate. Syrah is in the background, kind of shy. Very pleasant with the local chicken shack meal. 14%.

2006 Chateau St. Jean de la Gineste Rosée de la St. Jean $12
: A Corbieres rosé also purchased locally at WHWCo. They are doing the job there. Zees leetle wine is delightfully dry and just fruity enough to prevent zee mouse pucker. Great summer evening wine. Even the Renoir-inspired label says relax, enjoy, have some more cheese and cherries. There are so many wineries in the Languedoc region in and around Narbonne, Pezenas, Carcassonne, Beziers, Minerve and St. Chinian just like this one. Soon as the dollar/euro ratio improves I see traveling back there in my future. 13%.
I snapped some photos of the Woodland HIlls Wine crew recently. Here are pics of founder Paul Smith and the store’s heart and soul, Joe. Now you know who to say hi to! A couple of teddybears who routinely bring wines for every fan to the store.

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