Newsletter Montirius - 2010 June

Hello everyone,

You will find here all news of our wines and our domain since the beginning of the year. We are looking forward to meeting you soon.

Happy reading !

Christine and Eric Saurel

Vacqueyras Rosé Montirius "Perle de Rosée" 2009


Because we wanted our rosé wines fresher and more elegant, we decided to take a step backwards to look at the making of them. With our 2009 rosé it is ‘mission accomplished’.  This rosé is well named.  It is fresh, like a rosé wine, full of aromas of red fruits; it is delicate and has finesse. It is a blend of Grenache and Syrah.  The wine making process is done under direct pressure.  That is to say, we harvest the red grapes, we press them immediately with a pneumatic press.  As always, the juice is then put into a vat and we quietly allow the start of the alcoholic fermentation with all the natural yeasts.

Until now, our rosé was made using a method of ‘bleeding off’.  To do this we would harvest and de-stem the red grapes that were then put directly in the vat.  After a few hours of contact between the grapes and juice the rosé or pink colour would appear.  At this point, we would separate the juice of the grapes from the vat and this juice was then vinified separately. The result was interesting but not as much so as with the direct pneumatic press.


A hard winter for the vine pruners, but beneficial for our vines

Pruning started at the beginning of December 2009 and finished the end of March 2010.  Climate conditions were very hard for the men, with two periods of heavy snow in January and March (20 cms of snow in the vines) and many weeks of negative temperatures.

For the vines, the impact was more positive, with a superb supply of natural nitrogen.  The pruning team is still composed of our permanent employees Jean Pierre, Saïd, César, David, and since January, our new recruit Jean Laurent.  The credo of the domain remains, as always, the respect of the plant so as to maintain the right number of grape bunches (see our newsletter of March 2009).


The de-budding started at the beginning of May

It goes without saying that the de-budding process is done by hand.  It is the continuity of the pruning process.  In effect, it consists of eliminating the buds that were not chosen to give grapes at the time of pruning.  These buds are different from the main buds, and so-called because they are found on chosen vine limbs.  De-budding allows the maintenance of an aeration of the vine trunk, avoiding thickening of vegetation which then propagates the development of disease. De-budding also prepares for the pruning of the following winter.

This year it started 15 days later than other years because of the hard winter.  It is to be noted that it was beneficial because a strong Mistral (northerly wind) blowing at the time of the growing of young buds, breaks many of the vine shoots.  This year the Mistral started on the Ascension weekend and caused little damage because the vines had not yet grown.


Did you know ?

Our red Vacqueyras Montirius "Garrigues" is the only Biodynamic wine in the regular listing of the ‘Sociéte des Alcools du Québec’  ‘SAQ’ (a state company which is mandated to commercialise alcoholic drinks in the entire state of Quebec).  Is it just chance? Our eldest daughter Justine, is at present on a 3-month training course in Quebec, for her diploma in marketing.  She’s with our marketing agents Mr Dandurand and Mme Florentin of the agency ‘Vins de Chateaux Inc.’ There’s no doubt about it, wine flows in the family …..veins!


The race against weeds

This year, because of a heavy rainfall, it was not easy to manage the cutting back of weeds growing in and between the vines.  But we managed it!!  To allow too many weeds to grow would have kept humidity around the vine stock and been favourable to the development of fungi in this area.  The large weeds are a risk in the case of frost.  At this time of year they are in competition with the vines.


A Master of Wine enchanted by our Vacqueyras Rouge Montirius "Le Clos" 2007

We received the following commentary by mail on the 26/04/2010 from Mrs Alison Flemming (Master of Wine) after a professional wine tasting of Montirius Red Vacqueyras ‘Le Clos’ 2007:


“I wanted to give you some feedback following the tasting of your Vacqueyras Le Clos.  The wine was very much appreciated for its spicy, peppery, herbal character, its complexity and above all, its elegance despite its high alcohol.  The fact that it was not aged in oak, allowing the fruit to really shine through, made it supremely drinkable, with or without food.”

Our Montirius Red Gigondas "Terre des Aînés" 2005 chosen for the Pebble Beach Food & Wine Festival (USA, 8-11 April 2010)

Our Montirius Red Gigondas ‘Terre des Ainés’ 2005 is one of the 8 wines selected by Inter Rhone (the inter-professional body representing Rhône Wines) to represent the Rhône Valley at the Pebble Beach top class festival of food and wine for both consumers and professionals.  This festival is the highest ‘Epicurean Lifestyle Event’ in the country and brings together 40 reputed chefs.


News bites

Press cuttings

The ‘Gault et Millau’ best Bio wines in France has just come out.  Montirius gets marks between 15.5 and 17/20 as a special favourite or a "coup de coeur".


The Hubert Guide chose Montirius as one of the ‘leading lights’ of the year 2010.

More information, on our website, Press section.  


Silver medal at the Macon competition with our Montirius red Gigondas "Terre des Aînés" 2009.

Gigondas wine competition: 2nd prize with our Montirius red Gigondas "Confidential" 2005.

Silver medal at Silver medal at the Challenge International’ wine competition with our Montirius red Vacqueyras  "Garrigues", 2008.

Silver medal at the ‘Challenge International’ wine competition with our Montirius red Gigondas "Confidential" 2007.




Uncle Pierrots recipe

Mussels on a Pan

Buy fresh mussels from your fish supplier.  Light a big wood fire.  When the flames are good a red, put your stainless steel tray on top and throw the mussels on the tray.  As soon as the mussels open, take them off and eat immediately accompanied by a Montirius Vacqueyras rosé ‘Perle de Rosée’ 2009.  Succulent!

Some pictures


As always...

Discover a presentation of our domain in video on our website headline "Chosen Moments".

Participate in our wine tasting workshops by contacting us to sign up 

Vos remarques et suggestions sont les bienvenues pour enrichir nos prochaines newsletters !

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