France’s legendary winery Mas de Daumas Gassac is expanding its presence in Asia and is releasing its latest vintages for 2018.
Despite its modest designation and location in the South of France, in the Languedoc commune of Aniane, the Mas de Daumas Gassac vineyard is universally revered for its outstanding red and white wines. Out of its 2016 vintage, only 7,500 cases were produced, with some set to be released in spring 2018.
The family winery, founded by Véronique and Aimé Guibert – and now run by their four sons Samuel, Gaël, Roman and Basile – has single-handedly rewritten the history of winemaking for the region of Languedoc. Known for a century as a place where only cheap table wines were produced, the Guiberts were instrumental in showing that this region in the south of France could produce world-class wines.
For 2018, the winery is presenting its Red Grand Vin 2016, produced with the estate’s new press which has allowed for unparalleled extraction. This wine, produced from 40-year-old vines, has a high freshness, and tastes of ripe fruits such as cassis. To be drunk while young, this is an explosive vintage not to be missed.
The estate is renowned for its whites and for 2018, it is releasing its White Grand Vin 2016. It features the Mas de Daumas Gassac white signature: exotic fruits and light sap notes; a fresh finish and a dash of saltiness. This well- carved profile is made up of 8.1% rare grape varieties.
Mas de Daumas Gassac’s wines are grown on a “magic” terroir strikingly similar to the best of Burgundy, and cool microclimate gifting finesse and complexity to its vintages. It is here that Véronique and Aimé Guibert, first- time wine-makers, made their home and developed the Mas de Daumas Gassac wines, which are today still grown on 52 small vineyard plots amongst 3,000 hectares of protected forest. Their sons still see to the old ways of winemaking, ensuring that the wine is conceived and aged following European traditions with the highest standards.
The estate has earned a rare “cult” status since being founded in the 1970s. French gastronomic guide Gault & Millau hailed the winery as the “Lafite Rothschild of the Languedoc”, and The Times compared its vintages to “Latour”. British wine critic Michael Broadbent ranked its vintages among the 10 best in the world, while wine guru Robert Parker applauded them as “exceptional”.
In 1991, the estate also debuted its Moulin de Gassac selection, which was voted the world’s best wine by the International Wine Challenge in London just two years later. These compelling, single vineyard wines are the estate’s range of accessible vintages that combine elegance and freshness, and reflect the Mas de Daumas Gassac philosophy and craft. These are now marketed in 90 different countries.
MAS DE DAUMAS GASSAC’S TASTING NOTES 2018
MAS DE DAUMAS GASSAC RED GRAND VIN 2013 SGD$108.88
72% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5.4% Merlot, 5.3% Tannat, 3.8% Cabernet Franc, 2.5% Malbec, 2% Pinot Noir, 9% rare varieties
Blackish garnet. Outstanding and extremely refined. Complex and blooming aromas giving up lots of blueberry, plum, spring flowers and menthol. Mouth is fragrant, vigorous and tonic, with energetic fruit. The finale – a particularly harmonious freshness. After 24 hours, this wine blossoms and rounds out beautifully. It may well benefit from decanting if served before 2020. Released in 2015.
MAS DE DAUMAS GASSAC RED GRAND VIN 2016 SGD$108.88
72.6% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5.5% Merlot, 3.5% Petit Verdot, 2.9% Cabernet Franc,
1.9% Malbec, 1.7% Pinot Noir, 11.9% rare varieties
This wine is one of the greatest of the past 15 years. It boasts a deep and intense color, between dark cherry and blackberry. On the nose, a rich ambiance filled with hints of nutmeg, blackberry, delicate white flowers, candle wax and Armenian paper. High power and strength in roundness.
This smooth wine was made with a new press installed in 2016 that allows for unparalleled extraction, and 2016 is a showcase of high freshness, ripe fruits such as cassis, and delicate spice notes with an impressive length. Made with
40-year-old vines, the finesse of the fruits and natural freshness of the vintage give a tasting in the youth that is simply explosive. To be released in 2018. Drink in the youth or can be cellared for more than 40 years.
MAS DE DAUMAS GASSAC WHITE GRAND VIN 2013 SGD$108.88
The tropical, pineapple and floral-scented bouquet goes with a medium- bodied, ripe and layered feel on the palate. There’s lots of fruit here, but it stays nicely balanced. This is an impressive wine with a long, nutty finish. Released in 2015.
PONT DE GASAAC
PONT DE GASSAC BLANC 2016 SGD$48.80
40% Grenache White, 20% Sauvignon, 20% Chardonnay et 20% Viognier.
3 to 5 days skin maceration in stainless steel tanks, pressed and vinified under controlled temperatures.
Shiny, pale gold. Intense aromas of oranges and white flowers. Beautiful attack; fruity aromas with a touch of honey. A great match for white meats, fish with sauces & shellfish. Best served between 10°C and 12°C.
PONT DE GASSAC ROUGE 2016 SGD$48.80
30% Cabernet sauvignon, 30% Syrah, 30% Merlot and 10% Grenache
Traditional maceration (around 20 days), at 25°C to 32°C. Regular pumping over. Powerful and elegant, this wine is a deep ruby red that is expressive and complex. Red berries with round, warm tannins make for a structured, balanced feel. The Cabernet and Merlot vines used here are grown on lime sandstone and Rognacien marl slopes on an arid terroir in front of Mediterranean Sea, making for a strong character. This is a delight to go with red meat, game, duck and spicy dishes. Serve between 18°C and 20°C. Best decanted 2 hours before a meal, with stopper in place.
GUILHEM ROSE 2016 SGD$29.80
50% Syrah / 50% Carignan
This refreshing, floral vintage has a lively color of rose pink with some salmon glints. The nose is pleasant, intense, floral and mineral. On the palate, it is well balanced – combining red currants and berries tight finale. The finish is splendidly fresh and long: thoroughly “more-ish”.
SAUVIGNON BLANC 2016 SGD$29.80
Exotic and friendly. The “robe” of the wine shows a clear, pale gold. The aromas express some exotic peach flavours. On the palate, the wine is very open and fruity. The length is great, well balanced and very clean.
VIOGNIER 2016 SGD$29.80
Intense and complex, the “robe” of the wine is gold with green hints. One immediately is drawn in by the beautiful freshness of yellow flesh fruit (apricot, mango), white flowers (acacia) and a light hazelnut fragrance. The finish is between roundness and freshness. Slightly lemony.
CHARDONNAY 2016 SGD$29.80
A brilliant, rich, gold wine that is full in the mouth, with hints of citrus and wild flowers. It opens on fruity notes, with a hint of honey but is on the whole full, buttery, and long.
The high minerality & freshness of our white wines come from a clay & limestone terroir close to the Thau Lagoon.
PINOT NOIR 2016 SGD$29.80
Royal and classic, this selection is an elegant, light red with brick tint. It has a complex and delicate nose with the tipicity of the Pinot: candied cherry, light roasted hints and moka. Abundant fruit. A beautiful freshness and soft
tannins made it a balanced and fine Pinot.
SYRAH 2016 SGD$29.80
Deep violet red on the “robe”. The flavours show very ripe red fruit and a touch of leather. The overall taste is fruity, concentrated with a good tannic structure. This warm, rich wine is open and delicious.
MERLOT 2016 SGD$29.80
Deep, sensual and harmonious. Shows fine aromas of summer berries with a hint of spices. Well balanced, round and fruity: a friendly wine. Smooth, with a hint of roast coffee.
CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2016 SGD$29.80
Powerful and ready to drink. A gorgeous dark red, near black, with violet glints. On the nose, hints of very ripe pear, and a touch of roasted coffee. Stewed red berries, great tannic structure and hints of toast. This is a wine that opens well and leaves a definite impression.
In Singapore, Mas de Daumas Gassac wines can be found at top restaurants such as Odette, Les Amis, La Terre, Lerouy, Waku Ghin, Salt & Tapas, Me@OUE and many other restaurants. They can also be ordered from The Vintage Club and Redmart.