2018 DOMAINE DU TEMPS La Combe du Temps
Region: Languedoc < France
Grapes: Syrah, Grenache
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: certified organic, certified biodynamic, dry-farmed; chalk and clay soils; whole cluster ferment, carbonic fermentaiton, aged in neutral oak; bottled unfined, unfiltered, with no added So2; zero-zero, 12.5% ABV
Winemaker: Lauranne Gobert
LADY IN CHARGE: Lauranne Gobert is the owner/winemaker of Domaine du Temps. She purchased the domaine, which was already certified organic (since 1996,) in 2014. But she got her start in Burgundy, working with the legendary Frédéric Cossard, the super hard-core natural wine maestro of Saint-Romain. She brings this discipline and experience to her own project in the Languedoc.
This small, under-the-radar estate in France’s largest wine-producing region is making some of the most elegant, refined zero-zero wines we’ve come across. Perhaps because proprietor Lauranne Gobert has absorbed the philosophy and techniques of her mentor, Burgundy’s top natural winemaker Frédéric Cossard, and that pedigree and experience to the warmer Languedoc. She says, “My wines are naturally made, no chemicals but a lot of love.” The love shows in all 12 biodiverse vine hectares interspersed with donkeys, chickens, orchards and vegetable gardens. And WE love this juicy, elegantly-structured Syrah/Grenache blend that is earthy and spicy and tastes like fall. A happy mashup of childlike nostalgia and serious adult wine, you get some poppy red fruit from the carbo action (cherry Pop-Tart? with chocolate frosting and crumbled leaf sprinkles?) against a more serious backdrop of blackberry, black pepper, leather and roses.