The beautiful vineyards in the fall 랑그독의 생 시니앙도 만추입니다

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Photos by Chun Eun Sue

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One day late in autumn at Languedoc, France

With blue sky and colorful leaves, nature makes the showiest season, fall. Fall is also coming in the vineyards. The vineyard seems to have a good rest after harvest. I visited most of well known wine regions in France. Among them, I could choose one region where is most beautiful in fall. It’s Saint-Chinian.

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One day late in autumn at Languedoc, France

Saint-Chinian is located in Languedoc, the south of France. Languedoc is the biggest wine region not only in France, in the world of the wine region. Languedoc has more than 30 AOC(the French wine classification-Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée). However, if you taste many wines of one AOC, you will agree that it should have more specific and the smaller classification in one single AOC.

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One day late in autumn at Languedoc, France

Because wines of one AOC have various characters and different style. Of course, Saint-Chinian has also same situation. There are around 20 small villages under same name, Saint-Chinian, but the wine style of each village is clearly different as the terroir is different.

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One day late in autumn at Languedoc, France

 

I am happy to introduce two very contrasting domains, Domaine Canet Valette and Mas Champart. Domaine Canet Valette is in the north and Mas Champart is in the south of Saint-Chinian. Domaine Canet Valette has 20 hectares of vineyards. Their first vintage was 1992 and they grow grapes and make wines based on organic method. The owner, Marc Valette has charisma as my expectation.

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Domaine Canet Valette’s owner, Marc Valette

The main varieties are Mourvèdre, Syrah, Carignan and so on which are very local. The most characteristic of his wine is powerful taste. He likes wines could be preserved and prefers not light style.

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Domaine Canet Valette’s cave

The wine exactly shows his preference. Well-balanced structure with tannin has its identity of Marc Valette. And one more significant thing is that it’s not excessive, not too much. The wine has the balance of powerful and smooth.

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Domaine Canet Valette’s wines

As his philosophy of wine making, we tasted the old vintage wine, Maghani 1999. The first aroma of soil flavor is so impressive. It’s still very powerful and I do expect its excellent performance after 5 to 10 years.

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Domaine Canet Valette’s wines

 

Contradistinctively from Domaine Canet Valette, I can say that Mas Champart is the most elegant wine. Their main varieties are same as Domaine Canet Valette, but the wine style is totally different.

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Mas Champart’s owners, Madme. Isabelle Champart and Mr. Mathieu Champart

Isabelle and Mathieu Champart have 15 hectares of vineyards in 300 meters high area. The vines were already in this area, and now they grow grapes in old vines, the oldest one of 75 years. They have very much different vintage according to each year’s weather. They are also doing organic method, however they don’t have the organic certificate as it’s too expensive to apply.

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Mas Champart’s winery inside view

Isabelle and Mathieu always concentrate on making very nature style wine, minimizing artificial works by people’s hand. Naturally they do respect terroir mostly. Isabelle explains in details with her personal charisma. Mathieu keeps making wines whistling and smiling us in tasting wines. The Champarts look so happy and it seems that their wine expresses this happiness.

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Mas Champart’s wines

The different taste of white, rosé and red wine has something in common, elegance. Even having high alcohol like 14.5%, wine doesn’t make me trouble. I think that these are the most natural wines. Their wine makes me most comfortable. It’s just like Isabelle and Mathieu Champart. There isn’t only one answer in wine. Each personality completes various characteristic. Wine can offer us many different possibilities. It’s the reason I like wine.

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Mas Champart’s wines

 

 

 

eun soo

Contributor, Chun Eun Sue

Wine expert, Chun Eun Sue had worked in Korea best wine magazine as a senior marketing & international manager. Now she is working in the leading wine company in Korea. CultureM Magazine releases her wine & travel essay once a month.

와인 전문가 전은수씨는 국내 최고의 와인매거진에서 국, 내외 와인 마케팅을 담당했으며 현재 국내 와인회사에서 마케팅 및 홍보를 담당하고 있다. 해외 유명 와인산지를 직접 답사한 그녀의 생생한 이야기를 컬쳐엠매거진에서 공개한다.

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