Produced in the low foothills of the Pyrenees, where the climates of the Mediterranean and Atlantic meet, this original blend – light and easy-to-drink – makes Cassagnau a Languedoc wine with the accent of the southwest. Jacques Abet, doctor by profession, runs this family-owned estate with enthusiasm and painstaking care on a terroir that is unique. Family-owned since the eighteenth century, the estate owes its longevity to its women. Jacques’ grandmother Berthe, who managed the estate for six decades, took it through two world wars and many viticultural crises. He inherited this family property from his mother, Jacqueline. Today, it’s thanks to his wife Colette that Jacques, who had chosen to pursue a career in medicine, is able to satisfy his passion for winegrowing and for the terroir in which he grew up. You’ll find Jacques in the tiny village of Pauligne near Limoux. For the past few years, thanks to passionate dedication, strict standards and an authentic approach, he has been breathing new life into the estate.
One of the estate’s unique qualities lies in its hugely diverse mix of varieties – proof of the curiosity and open-mindedness Jacques. Besides the Mediterranean varieties, Syrah and Grenache, you’ll also find Atlantic varieties more typical of Bordeaux – Merlot and Cabernet – the Burgundy varieties of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, and last but not least, the time-honored local varieties, Mauzac and Chenin Blanc.
The geographical situation of the Languedoc and the Atlantic climate are the defining influences when it comes to explaining the excellence and uniqueness of this terroir. Here, by an almost magical stroke of luck, two climates come together: the Mediterranean and the Atlantic. The Mediterranean influences make for generous wines, with the sunshine providing ripeness, while the westerly influence maintains the humidity and freshness that is necessary for the fruit to express itself fully. Rounding out the picture is the diversity of the soils: gravel terraces with large round pebbles predominate on the low slopes of the foothills of Pyrenees.
The carefully picked grapes are transported to the winery and placed in cement vats. The wines are vat-aged, then blended for bottling at the end of the winter following the harvest. Every generation comes together at harvest time for a family grape-picking party The brilliant ruby-red color with deep purple tints promises a wine of great freshness. The nose reveals a subtle blend of blackberry and blackcurrant with a hint of spicy pepper and herbs, which is Syrah’s signature flavor. This wine has a round front palate and creamy extract and a superbly fresh finish. Distinctly easy-to-drink and made to be enjoyed with or without food. This is best drunk young and is a blend consisting of 35% Syrah, 35% Grenache, and 30% Merlot.