Domaine des Bernardins, Muscat de Beaumes de Venise
- Rhône, France
Domaine des Bernardins spreads out over the south-east side of the Dentelles de Montmirail hills, in Beaumes de Venise in the southern part of the Rhone valley. The viticulture is essentially done by hand. Five people work full-time in the vineyards. Working by hand and the attention each vine gets are fundamental. Pruning, de-budding, trellising, leaf removal and picking are thus carried out by hand with the utmost care.
As a way of protecting the plants, the winemaker only use phytosanitary products when necessary and within strict guidelines by staggering the treatments appropriately, to minimise the amount of chemicals used. He prefers to use as much as possible manual and organic techniques. Leaving natural grass cover, removing buds and leaves from the vines, preserving biodiversity around the vineyard: olive, almond and cypress trees, wild rosemary and capers. In the spirit of respecting traditional techniques and the best elements of modern technology, cellar manager Andrew Hall and his winemaker son Romain Hall take family traditions very seriously.
After picking the grapes by hand, they press them straightaway to ferment the juice without skins. They don’t add any yeasts and keep the alcoholic fermentation in check by temperature control.
Vin Doux Naturel winemaking involves stopping fermentation to preserve the grapes’ natural sweetness. During the vinification, they watch the vats day and night and add the fortifying spirit just at the right moment. At this stage, the wine’s final balance is at stake. The wine is then aged in stainless steel tanks for 6 months before bottling.
The visual aspect of the wines is clear gold colour, slightly tilered. The nose is fruity and delectable, its opening up on notes of apricot, very ripe pear and loral notes. The palate is highly enjoyable with the same aromas as the ones found on the nose.
|Grape||Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains, Muscat Noir à Petits Grains|
|Wine Type||Dessert wines|
|Food Match||Cheese - Chèvre/Goats Cheese, Cheese - Roquefort Blue, Occasions – Apéritif|