The history of Laurent Miquel’s property is fascinating– before his family acquired the land in 1791 the vines had been previously cultivated by Roman warriors and later by monks in the Middle Ages. In the late 1970’s before the area was even recognized as an official wine-growing region, the family started to widely replant and this ushered in the official start to Miquel wine. Laurent comes from a long line of winemakers, and despite a short deviation from the family business during university, he went on to acquire an oenology degree and has pursued a dedicated and wildly successful career tending to the land and sharing his passion with his children. Laurent abides by a low-intervention approach, feeling that if the team properly focuses their work in the vineyard, there are only subtle touches that may need to be made during the winemaking itself. Miquel specializes in Languedoc varietals, Syrah and Viognier. He makes a wide range of wines (including some exceptional value stuff) but this is top shelf – two bold, expressive wines produced from old low-yielding vines planted on stony soils.
3 bottles each of:
Name: 2016 Viognier Grande Cuvée Vérité
Region: PAYS D'OC
The first of Miquel’s viognier vines were planted on the property in 1992. This wine has won an international challenge that has deemed it “the best white of Languedoc Roussillon and the best viognier in the world.” The vines are harvested from a single south-facing vineyard during the night in order to retain freshness. This wine is gold in colour, with notes of honeysuckle, apricot and white peach. Its bright acidity balances the oak and tropical characteristics. The finish on this wine is long and complex.
The Miquel family first bought land in the central Languedoc region in 1791, but Viognier was only planted in 1992. This classic example has a mid-gold hue, a waxy, honeyed character and crisp acidity balancing rich, ripe, tropical fruit flavours. 70% of the blend was fermented and matured in oak barrels. Long and complex. 91 Decanter
Name: 2014 Syrah Grande Cuvée Bardou
The grapes for this wine are from a single block of Syrah vines on the property, which grow on clay and limestone soils. It is aged half in 55% new oak and 45% old French barrels for fourteen months. It is dark ruby, with an intense bouquet of complex fruit and spice. It has traces of toasted vanilla and floral aromas, rounded tannins and a deep, long finish.