2017 Domaine des Bernardins Muscat de Beaumes de Venise VDN (37.5cl)
Region: France, Rhône - South
Grape Varieties: Muscat Blanc, Muscat Noir
Sweet, full-bodied amber; dried apricots and figs | Caramel-drizzles cheesecake
Muscat is a grape that easily tilts over into caricature, so it was an immense relief to find the sensible, well-balanced Muscats of the Hall-Castaud family (an English-French family).
Romain strives to keep the fruit fresh in his Muscats, and aims for a lower residual sugar level, so that the wine retains its natural charm and some of the inherent complexity shines through. We like this with almost any dessert, but especially good dark chocolate.
Centuries ago, this was a venerable place of reflection and worship, as it belonged to the order of Cistercian monks. After it was turned into a winery, it was named Domaine des Bernardins, as a reference to the ecclesiastical order, which was heavily influenced by St. Bernard of Clairvaux.
The estate has belonged to the Castaud family for five generations now, and they have been making wine since the early-19th century. The Castauds have played a central part in the history of the Muscat de Beaumes de Venise appellation, as Louis Castaud was a key lobbyist behind gaining recognition for the AOC in 1945. Given that the AOC system was only introduced to France in 1935, this was an incredible achievement for such a small sub-region.
This wine is also available in 75cl bottles.
Find out more here.