NV Domaine des Bernardins Muscat de Beaumes de Venise VDN «Hommage» (50cl)
Region: France, Rhône - South
Grape Variety: Muscat Blanc, Muscat Noir
Sweet, full-bodied amber; intense, hazelnut and orange blossom | Light blue cheeses
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.
The «Hommage» is a blend of 75% white and 25% black Muscat à petits grains. Hand-picked, fermented off the skins, native yeasts only, Intensely flavoured with dried fig, candied quince, hazelnut, star anise and a long honeyed finish. Classic pairings are blue cheeses and foie gras, but it will also work beautifully alongside tartes, rich desserts (such as coffee), dried fruits and nuts as an aperitif. The intensity of flavour will also appeal to those committed cigar-smokers among you. Drinking beautifully now, but will keep for at least another decade.
Should be served lightly chilled, at circa 12C.
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