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Plaimont, Moonseng Merlot-Manseng Noir, Côtes de Gascogne 2018

Red Wine from France - SW France (excl. Bordeaux)
Manseng noir is the secret ingredient in this deliciously fruity red from Gascony in the south-west of France, and one of several grape varieties that have been rediscovered from odd vines that escaped the scourge of the locust-like phylloxera that ravaged Europe’s vines in the 19th century. Its key characteristics are full ripeness yet modest alcohol – a very happy combination!
Price: £7.95 Bottle
Price: £47.50 Case of 6
In Stock
Code: FC39391

Wine characteristics

  • Red Wine
  • Light to medium-bodied
  • Merlot
  • 12.5% Alcohol
  • No oak influence
  • Now to 2023
  • 75cl
  • Cork, plastic

South-West France (ex Bordeaux)

Most of the wine regions representing the south-west of France are linked by river to Bordeaux and were once rivals of the Bordelais for trade. It was certainly not unknown for some of these wines to be brought to Bordeaux in order to stiffen the sinews of some of the thinner clarets in days gone by. However, there is more to the region than those appellations and the Vins de pays/ IGPs up-river of their erstwhile rival.

The south-west can be roughly compartmentalised in to four categories, as follows:

Bergeracois: running along both banks of the Dordogne River and including Bergerac, Monbazillac and other ACs where Bordeaux varieties proliferate, ably and interestingly supported by some local varieties.

Garonne: running along both banks of the River Garonne as far as Agen and featuring Côtes-de-Duras, Côtes-du-Marmandais, Buzet.

Haut-Pays: the area north and north-west of Toulouse including Gaillac, Cahors and the Côtes-du-Frontonnais.

Pyrenees: in the area between Adour and the Pyrenees. ...
Most of the wine regions representing the south-west of France are linked by river to Bordeaux and were once rivals of the Bordelais for trade. It was certainly not unknown for some of these wines to be brought to Bordeaux in order to stiffen the sinews of some of the thinner clarets in days gone by. However, there is more to the region than those appellations and the Vins de pays/ IGPs up-river of their erstwhile rival.

The south-west can be roughly compartmentalised in to four categories, as follows:

Bergeracois: running along both banks of the Dordogne River and including Bergerac, Monbazillac and other ACs where Bordeaux varieties proliferate, ably and interestingly supported by some local varieties.

Garonne: running along both banks of the River Garonne as far as Agen and featuring Côtes-de-Duras, Côtes-du-Marmandais, Buzet.

Haut-Pays: the area north and north-west of Toulouse including Gaillac, Cahors and the Côtes-du-Frontonnais.

Pyrenees: in the area between Adour and the Pyrenees. Here you will find Côtes de Gascogne, Madiran, Jurançon, Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh and Irouléguy, the latter of which is in real Basque country in the foothills of the Pyrennes, close to the Bay of Biscay.

The influence of the Atlantic Ocean is surprisingly strong even this deep inland and it merges with continental and alpine elements across such a large area to provide moist spring weather and wet winters counterbalanced by hot summers and long, sunny autumns just as the grapes are ripening. Naturally, the area is great enough in size for the soils to be incredibly varied across it. Alluvial and marine soils, often gravel and limestone respectively, are common factors in many areas, the former often on rising terraces above rivers or ancient watercourses.

In many appellations and IGPs it has taken the dynamism of forward thinking, passionate cooperatives and visionaries to save the vineyards and indigenous grape varieties of these regions from serious neglect or even extinction. The devastation of phylloxera around the end of the 19th century was particularly bad in these areas and it was not really until the 1970s, and even later in some cases, that a turnaround in fortunes occurred. The roll call of local varieites is impressive and promising – abouriou, arrufiac, baroque, duras, fer servadou, jurançon noir, len de l’el, petit manseng, gros manseng, mauzac, négrette, tannat and peiti courbu. It is a region that should make a curious wine lover’s mouth water.
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Plaimont Producteurs

There is an ancient tradition of winemaking in Gascony but by the third quarter of the 20th century the vast majority of the wine made there was destined to be distilled into the region’s distinctive brandies, which was not always a profitable business for most growers, though it has seen a recent resurgence.

When the spirit market became depressed in the wake of the oil crisis of the early 1970s there was a need to consider other outlets for the grapes, and this is where André Dubosc came in. As a native of the area and a man of great determination and vision, he set about changing the way he and his fellow growers perceived their terroir and their grapes.

In 1979 he persuaded three co-operatives, those of Plaisance, Aignan and Saint-Mont, to join forces in a merger that was named Plaimont Producteurs. The name was taken from the three constituents (PL-AI-MONT) and the aim was to provide growers with a fair deal and to market the wines with more professionalism. Their success in doing both led to three more co-operatives coming into the fold in 1999.

They now represent 98% of total Saint-Mont production, and nearly half of all the production in Côtes de Gascogne, Madiran and Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh. Over 1,000 growers contribute their fruit to the co-op and adhere to strict rules and supervision over their combined 5,300 hectares of land. Payment for the grapes that come in to the winery are higher for better-quality fruit, which incentivises growers to give their best.

André...
There is an ancient tradition of winemaking in Gascony but by the third quarter of the 20th century the vast majority of the wine made there was destined to be distilled into the region’s distinctive brandies, which was not always a profitable business for most growers, though it has seen a recent resurgence.

When the spirit market became depressed in the wake of the oil crisis of the early 1970s there was a need to consider other outlets for the grapes, and this is where André Dubosc came in. As a native of the area and a man of great determination and vision, he set about changing the way he and his fellow growers perceived their terroir and their grapes.

In 1979 he persuaded three co-operatives, those of Plaisance, Aignan and Saint-Mont, to join forces in a merger that was named Plaimont Producteurs. The name was taken from the three constituents (PL-AI-MONT) and the aim was to provide growers with a fair deal and to market the wines with more professionalism. Their success in doing both led to three more co-operatives coming into the fold in 1999.

They now represent 98% of total Saint-Mont production, and nearly half of all the production in Côtes de Gascogne, Madiran and Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh. Over 1,000 growers contribute their fruit to the co-op and adhere to strict rules and supervision over their combined 5,300 hectares of land. Payment for the grapes that come in to the winery are higher for better-quality fruit, which incentivises growers to give their best.

André Dubosc was also keen to retain, and where necessary to recover, local varieties like petit courbu and pinenc and they have contributed uniquely to the flavours and character of the wines. Research continues into other varieties.

As the co-operative moves into the future following Andre Dubosc's retirement, they have sometimes struggled to maintain the trajectory set for them by their mentor and The Society only buys when we are sure that the quality is good.
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2018 vintage reviews

midweekwines.co.uk

One of the red grapevarieties the Plaimont operation has brought back from the (almost) dead ismanseng noir – a dark coloured grape with good aging potential – and here theyblend it with...
One of the red grapevarieties the Plaimont operation has brought back from the (almost) dead ismanseng noir – a dark coloured grape with good aging potential – and here theyblend it with merlot.I enjoyed the fullness and smoothness of [this wine] which works well with thewine’s soft raspberry and cherry flavours and the good acidity, limited tanninand suspicions of cinnamon, bay leaf and coffee that accompany them. 
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- Brian Elliott

Wine-pages.com

From a cooler yearwhen the naturally high acid of the Manseng Noir had to be managed, this has alittle more of a tapenade, spicy character, but still that same easy-goingfruit and a nicely dry, savoury...
From a cooler yearwhen the naturally high acid of the Manseng Noir had to be managed, this has alittle more of a tapenade, spicy character, but still that same easy-goingfruit and a nicely dry, savoury finish showing charming plush fruit.
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87/100 Tom Cannavan

The Independent

When blended with the more widespread merlot, [long-neglected manseng noir] makes for this terrific gem of a red ... with some spicy, silky, ripe dark fruit flavours and a lovely fresh mouthfeel that ...
When blended with the more widespread merlot, [long-neglected manseng noir] makes for this terrific gem of a red ... with some spicy, silky, ripe dark fruit flavours and a lovely fresh mouthfeel that acts as a nice counterbalance.
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- Terry Kirby

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