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Wednesday, 5 May 2021

Calmel & Joseph Languedoc Reds from Daniel Lambert

Two Calmel & Joseph reds from Daniel Lambert

I've long been a fan of Languedoc in general and Calmel & Joseph in particular; I've also been impressed with pretty much everything I have tried from Daniel Lambert's range of well-made, technically adept wines that are complex enough to to be serious yet also easy to enjoy.

For years Europe's "wine lake", Languedoc has successfully reinvented itself as a go-ahead region of innovation and quality.

Much like indie or punk rock (in the very broadest sense), Languedoc wines combine stylish innovation with an edgy urgency over something very pleasing indeed.

Languedoc is, then, in the process of becoming a modern classic wine region.

This focus on quality and innovation but without the long-standing heritage is something of an advantage for the buyer; at its simplest, it means lower prices for the same if not better quality when compared to more established regions such as Bordeaux, Burgundy or the Rhône which can charge more of a premium for the name on the label regardless of what is in the bottle.

Calmel & Joseph Le Domaine Le Sentier 2019, Pays d’Oc, France (£14, independents) ripe black cherry fruit with raspberry, spice and something slightly herbaceous; fresh and savoury with very fine but persistent tannins. Well-made, precise and elegant.

Improves with some aeration.

Good. Match with tuna tartare or roast duck.

Calmel & Joseph say of their wine: An appealingly cherry red. Aromas of red and black fruit and pomegranate seeds announce a wine of great freshness and superb tension. An impression confirmed in the mouth that opens with fresh summer fruits such as wild cherry and finishes on more spicy, peppery and floral notes. A poised and magnificently balanced wine.

Calmel & Joseph Les Terroirs Vieux Carignan, IGP Côtes du Brian 2019 (£14, independents)

100% Carignan from vines planted in 1890 with a long growing season in 2019.

Ripe red and black cherries, dried blueberries and cinnamon spice with dried green herbs; rich, full and supple with very ripe tannins.


Match with robust dishes such as wild boar sausages.

Other reviews:

Calmel & Joseph Le Domaine Le Sentier 2019

Jancis Robinson.com (18/03/2020) Certified organic. Single vineyard. From their own property. Smells like cherry pie and stick cinnamon. Dry but ripe. Tannins like a comfortable cup of proper builder’s tea. Neither too much nor too little. Touch of green in the flavour (not the texture). Light-bodied, neat, pointed on the finish. Exceptionally good for a Pays d'Oc Pinot. Tamlyn Currin 16.0 / 20

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