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Labranche Laffront, Madiran, 2017

Ripe Black fruit, Spicy, Punchy

Farming

Organic

Producer

Labranche Laffont

Grape

Tannat/Cab Sav/Cab Franc

Wine Type

Red

Country

France

Region

Madiran AOC, Gascony

Vintage

2017

Alcohol

14%

Size

75cl

In 1992 when she was just 23, Christine Dupuy took over 6ha of family vineyards when her father died unexpectedly, becoming the youngest winemaker in the Madiran appellation. Located on the gently rolling hillsides of Maumusson, in very sticky heavy yellow clay with some pebbles and limestone, the domaine had been in the family’s hands since the French revolution.

Although she had just qualified as an oenologist, Christine had little practical experience, which she set out to gain by working stages at well-known local domaines Aydie, Capmartin and Chapelle l’Enclos, together with support and advice from Alain Brumont. Christine has come a long way since those early days and has gradually built up her holdings to current levels (with 15ha in Maumusson and 5ha in Saint-Lanne), all hand-harvested and tended organically since 2010 (certified since 2014).

She is very fortunate to be one of only two growers in the region to own a clutch of tannat vines dating back to the 1870 before phylloxera.

Two thirds of Christine Dupuy’s 45yo vineyards produce this cuve-aged wine whose dense ripe black fruit puts us in mind of good northern Spanish reds. Low yields, optimum maturity for grape picking, a gentle touch when it comes to extraction, low sulphur (35mg/l total), and a three years élevage help to give the wine notable freshness and balance. Critics now justly acclaim Christine and she is one of the leading winemakers in Madiran.

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