Madiran is one South Western France region that is often overlooked by wine lovers who are drawn to the better known region to its north, Bordeaux. While the dominant grape in the region is Tannat which can be tannic and labelled as ‘rustic’, this wine is a smoothed out blend of Tannat, Cabernet Sauvignon and a small amount of Fer (or Pinenc). Domaine Berthoumieu is a family run winery near Viella to the north of the Madiran region and is in the custodianship of Claire and Marion Bortolussi.
After tasting this wine on two separate occasions within weeks of each other, this inky deeply coloured wine is an intriguing one. One both occasions the tannins were noted as having a fine pull of powdery tannins. The kind that coat the mouth, just as you expect from the Madiran region but riper and softer. In this wine, these provide depth to the fruit, being softly defined and ripe.
The blackberry fruit is accompanied by liquorice, an earthy graphite, nutmeg and a garni bouquet of dried herbs. It is not a Madiran made for cellaring, as some require a long time for those tannins to tame, but is one made for drinking in the short term. Particularly, if you are looking for a red wine to go with a juicy burger, some wild boar sausages or a cassoulet.
Quickie review «A fruity, earthy red with a fine pull of tannins to fill the mouth, but it strikes a balance with plenty of fruit.»
Country of Origin: Madiran, France
Tasting Date: October 2018
Price: UK£13| Euro 11
Drink: now – 5 years
Needs food: better with food