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Eric Texier, Brézème Rouge, Côtes du Rhône, Northern Rhône, France, 2021

Product code: 5085
Eric Texier, Brézème Rouge, Côtes du Rhône, Northern Rhône, France, 2021

Producer Profile

A man of conviction but by no means a zealot, Eric Texier likes to push the boundaries.

Despite having no experience or contacts in wine, Eric decided to give up his career as a nuclear engineer and study winemaking in 1992, interning with Jean-Marie Guffens at Verget in Mâcon. Lacking the network to buy his own vineyard, Eric did his time with established winemakers then made négoce wines with the fruit of like-minded purists until he was introduced to François Pouchoulin, AKA the Godfather of Brézème. Eric was fascinated by the history of this tiny enclave on the southernmost edge of the Northern Rhone, on the left bank of the Rhone. It is South facing, has limestone-rich clay soils and, at 300 meters of elevation has an increasingly steep aspect with terrain that grows rockier as the slope rises. In the mid-19th century, its wines rivalled those of Hermitage but, by 1961, just one hectare remained. Thanks to Pouchoulin’s help and guidance, Texier eventually succeeded in purchasing a tiny parcel of vines in Brézème. Many years later, Éric has now put the Brézème appellation back on the map, and is the leading grower there. After Brézème, Eric and his wife Laurence (the backbone of their business-they are very much a team and travel everywhere together) purchased another tiny plot, this time in the Ouvèze valley in the Ardèche, on the right bank of the Rhone. This site has granite soils, is at a higher altitude than Brézème and has higher growing temperatures. According to Eric, both of these classic Northern Rhone plots had almost been forgotten because of their isolated geographic position and small surface areas. Today, Eric and Laurence have 12 hectares under vine, with vines aged from 30 to 90 years old on both sides of the Rhone, all worked organically. This is not a sudden conversion or a response to trend, Eric has worked organically since the beginning. As for biodynamics, he follows some of its principles but is not dogmatic about it.

Viticulture

100% Syrah from younger vines (20-40 years) from Eric's limestone-marl vineyards of Brézème.

Winemaking

Vinification and ageing is identical to the St.Julien bottling, but this wine emphasises the cooler, more limestone rich parcels. Paired with whole bunch fermentation, native yeasts, open-topped concrete fermenters, and extended time on lees (18-24 months) without racking, this is a seamless, complex and balanced wine. No sulphur is used prior to bottling. Bottled without fining or filtration.

Oak Ageing

No oak ageing

Tasting Note

A beautiful, finely structured style of Syrah, with vivid focus, lively black raspberry, tea, pepper and wood smoke notes, whilst the palate has an elegant freshness, dark berries, spice and a savoury note, adding to its complexity.

Food Matching

Pair with richer dishes and stews (pot au feu, garbure, petit salé) in its youth, and more refined cuisine as it evolves.

Technical Details
Varieties:
Syrah 100%
Vegetarian Vegan Certified Organic
ABV:
12%

Closure:
Natural cork

Colour:
Red

Style:
Still wine

Case Size:
12 x 75cl