Wine of the week: a magical blend with forest scents
2009 Hegarty Chamans, No.2, Minervois, France (£12.99, Adnams, 020-7580 2443 or 01502 727272).
I met up with Sir John Hegarty, Philippa Crane and their winemaker, Samuel Berger, the other day and I was transfixed as they poured their latest range of wines for me to savour. The 2008 Les Chamans Blanc, a heady roussanne/marsanne blend, was kaleidoscopic, changing incrementally over a two-hour period and holding us in its aura throughout.
The 2004 White Knight, a marsanne-dominant sweetie, was suitably lusty and confessional. The 2005 No.1, the mighty syrah/carignan cuvée, was typically brooding, with haunting bark, camphor and game notes.
The star of the show, however, was the least expensive member of the line up, 2009 No.2 – a mystical grenache, mourvèdre, cinsault blend.
This fragrant, elemental, resonant wine is the embodiment of the biodynamic regime at the property. Alive in the glass, this swirling vortex of magical fruit notes and forest scents never lets you rest. Once decanted, the aromas come into their own, constantly evolving. John and Philippa have achieved their aim of transposing the subtlety of their soils and integrity of their vines into the glass.
• Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition’s Communicator of the Year (www.matthewjukes.com).