In 2018, brother & sister - Olivier Coste & Jeanne Coste, acquired the millennia-old Château des Adouzes at AOP Faugères, Languedoc, South of France.
Faugères is a small appellation very well-regarded for its red wines. It’s the only Languedoc appellation with a homogenous terroir throughout. Here, the schist is king. This very infertile rock drains the water, making roots go very deep into the soil to find it, down to fractures in the bedrock. This unique feature makes the vines very resistant to drought. Schist also absorbs and stores heat during the day, slowly releasing it back at night, which promotes healthy grape ripening.
The majority of the 42 Ha (100 acres) vineyard features 70+-year-old vines of Grenache noir, Cinsault and Carignan. The rest is Mourvèdre and Syrah. All the grapes thrive on this excellent schist terroir. The property is entirely situated within the Faugères appellation.
Frère et Sœur, meaning brother & sister, is the fruit of the best plots Adouzes.
APPELLATION: AOP Faugères, Languedoc, South of France.
TERROIR: Schist hillsides at 200-400m (650-1300ft) altitude
GRAPES: 70% grenache noir, 25% syrah, 5% Mourvèdre
WINEMAKING: Traditional vinification. Hand harvest at optimal maturity. Grapes are sorted in the vineyard. Each varietal is vinified separately in order to obtain the best of their individual properties. Ageing in French oak barrels for 12 months.
TASTING NOTES: Carafe the wine for 30-60 minutes before serving. Intense ruby red color. Notes of fresh red fruit, cassis and black pepper aromas combine with hints of cinnamon, garrigue and vanilla. Silky tannins and structured, yet with elegance and freshness, followed by a long finish.
"This wine smells like dark purple satin dipped in tamarind and plum jam. It tastes like Portuguese coffee, bica, and more of that tamarind, and eucalyptus leaves crushed into a paste with green olives, and scuffed hot-summer earth, and the bunch of dried thyme that's been hanging for a year above the cooker. It should only be drunk with a shank stew that's been cooking for three days and is the colour of mahogany, glistening with ruby-gold pearls of paprika-stained oil and fragrant with armfuls of dried herbs and generous handfuls of black pepper. Real Faugères, rough-hewn, kinder than it first appears.(TC)"
ACCOLADES: not available. The 2018 vintage has scored 92 Robert Parkers, 17/20 Jancis Robinson.
Food Pairing: Drink with steak tartare, beef tournedos or aged cheeses.
Cellaring: Can be drunk young to enjoy its fruit, or after several years of cellaring to reveal its full aromatic complexity.