Wine review of 2015 Mas des Capitelles ‘Vintage’ Faugères Rouge, Languedoc red from France
The ‘vintage’ cuvée by Languedoc producer Mas des Capitelles is a new label for the winery aimed at replacing over time the ‘Loris’ cuvée.
Vintage is a blend of 40% old vines Carignan (80+ year-old vines), 30% Mourvèdre and 30% Grenache. Grapes hand-harvested manually from low-yielding vineyards.
The Carignan and Mourvèdre of “Vintage” were aged in French oak barrels for 24 months at 80% before being blended with the Grenache (aged in tank) so that the oak barrel characters do not predominate in the wine’s profile.
Overall Tasting Impressions
Truly a dense, fruity, and spicy Languedoc red, in a characteristic sweet/savory style so typical of the well-made wines from the area.
What surprises and pleases much beyond this however, is the immense concentration of everything packed into this ‘vintage’ cuvee. Aromas, acidity, body, soft tannins, and a salty minerality are so intense and dense!
On top of that, there is certainly a distinctive herbal spiciness here, reminding of the wine’s origin in Languedoc region of Southern France, where the garrigue is filled with thyme and rosemary. Perhaps a genuine sense of terroir. This wine certainly makes you believe so!
A wine to experience it is…
Full Tasting Notes
This Languedoc red comes in a pretty dark and intense ruby red color, nearly black to the core and a vibrant dark red to the rim with hints of both orange and purple hues.
The nose is very pungent and expressive, and surprisingly herbal!
Caramel and dark cherry aromas are the dominant features, giving the wine a sweetly-tempting smell. Powerful notes of licorice, rosemary, green olive, and anise lift and spice things up notably giving the aromatic profile a unique signature. Add touches of earthiness, like warm sand or garrigue, providing further depth and intrigue!
Certainly, it is captivating and intriguing to smell at, layered, fruity but layered and somewhat profound.
The palate is utterly and surprisingly soft at first, bursting in rich juicy caramel and dark cherry flavors (just like on the nose, those are the dominant features on the palate).
This is a dry red boasting a salty and mineral acidity. But tannins feel so smooth and velvety, and the body so round and oily, while the sweet-tasting ripe red berries flavors give a sense of opulent fruitiness, that the wine feels warming and satisfying from so much goodness.
Towards the finish, it literally explodes in intense and complex fruity, caramely, spicy and Violette-like floral notes. That’s when you realize the sheer concentration packed into this Faugères.