Les Obriers de la Peira 2009
Terrasses du Larzac
Our domaine began in 2004 - in a small stone barn halfway between Grange des Pères and Daumas Gassac. It is situated at the foot of the Larzac plateau, where the grazing of sheep and production of Roquefort begins. This is an area of warm summers and cold winters, and of poor stony soils scented of fennel, rosemary and thyme.
We were inspired by one belief: that with rigorous and uncompromising work in the vineyard and noninterventionist winemaking, the true character of this terroir may convey something of its beauty and wildness, something unique and expressive.
This involved a meticulous approach to viticulture, very low yields, short pruning, de-suckering, crop thinning, shoot removal, leaf plucking, and green harvesting, the hand picking of perfectly ripe grapes in small cagettes, a double triage and sorting table, and the careful élevage of small amounts of wine in new barrels.
Our team consists of our winemaker Jérémie Depierre (a young vigneron with stages at Château Margaux and Château Guiraud), Karine Ahton (a lawyer from the Languedoc), and Rob Dougan (a writer/composer of music).
The inspiration for the name of our domaine is a maxim of the ‘workers of the stone’ from the region and an old Occitan expression:
‘Plaçar una pèira en damaisèla’ – place the stone with its best face forward
(Litt. Placer une Pierre en Demoiselle)
Like these workers of yesteryear, our aim is to take what nature, and this stony soil has to offer and try to find its most beautiful expression.
Surface Area: 11.6 hectares
Soil: Gravelly alluvial deposits (Pliocene Age). These deposits were derived principally from the mountains of Late Jurassic (about 150 million years old) limestone to the north. The gravels (along with sand, silt, and clay) were laid down in stream channels and in what are known as alluvial fans (cônes). Deep, porous, permeable, well drained and well aerated with suffi cient clay content for hydric and cation nutrition needs, a signifi cant positive given a nonirrigated regime, especially in times of low rainfall.
Geographical Situation: On the terraces dominated by high Jurassic limestone cliffs of Larzac.
Density of Plantation: 4000 to 5000 plants per hectare.
Grape Varieties: Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Viognier, Roussanne, Cinsault, Carignan.
Age of Vines: 10 to 40 years.
TERRASSES DU LARZAC
The Terrasses du Larzac is in the north of the Herault and includes the ancient villages of Montpeyroux and St-Saturnin. Here summers are warmer and longer, and winters are colder than is general in the region. Whereas some slopes which form a natural boundary for the Terrasses du Larzac do rise to over 800 metres (2650 ft), the areas under vines and classed as AOC range from 50–300 metres (165–990 ft) up the slopes of the Causse and on the old terraces.
The Romans first planted vines in the Terrasses du Larzac area. The land around Lodève had great appeal, stretching as it did along the busy Roman road which linked Cessero (St Thibéry) with Segodunum (Rodez).
John Wilson, The Irish Times, April 2 2011
I was strongly advised on several occasions to try this wine by Gary Gubbins of importer/wine warehouse
Lar Veale, Sunday Tribune Dec 19th 2010
There's a little known area in the Languedoc called the Terrasses du Larzac. The area was recently anointed 'Grand Cru' status, a new classification to reflect the quality of the terroir. This is quite simply, the best wine I've had all year. In addition to the great quality fruit, there's gorgeous herbs, a nuttiness and the smallest hint of mint.
The Wine Advocate
2007 Obriers de la Peira (91-92 )
In my fantasy world where the authorities require every Languedoc vigneron to protect some old Cinsault and Carignan vines, they should all be required as well to taste La Peira’s 2007 Les Obriers de la Peira, or any other vintage of this remarkable blend of two parts Cinsault and one of Carignan. Production has already “ramped up” to over one thousand cases, or a bit more than the combined production of the estate’s other three cuvees. That said, the yields permitted these old vines (to say nothing of those that inform the other bottlings at this estate) would stop most growers dead in their tracks. This could be called “almonds (Cinsault) meet walnuts (Carignan)”and the nutty, toasty, richness is enhanced by fermentation and aging in young oaken uprights (whence I tasted it, with a small component from barriques having been added). To be sure, dark cherry and blackberry abound here too, along with hints of mint.
Silky smooth and seductively palate-coating, enormously ripe to the point of resembling a liqueur, yet with its alcohol hidden and with a bright, vivacious core of fresh fruit, this will be irresistible on release, but who knows how many years it might go on delivering pleasure? (David Schildknecht Wine Advocate June 2009)
Jeb Dunnuck, The Rhone Report
2008 La Pèira Coteaux du Languedoc Les Terrasses du Larzac Les Obriers de La Pèira (France, Languedoc Roussillon, Languedoc, Coteaux du Languedoc Les Terrasses du Larzac) $20 Silky and perfumed, with an understated elegance about it that ‟ s similar to a north Rhône Syrah, the 2008 La Pèira Coteaux du Languedoc Les Terrasses du Larzac Les Obriers de La Pèira is a barrel aged blend of 59% Cinsualt and 41% Carignan that ‟ s all from the gravel and limestone soils of the Bellefeuille vineyard. It shows captivating aromatics of freshly snipped flowers, damp earth, iron, and mineral like notes that are supported by fresh raspberry and pit fruits. The wine follows suite on the palate and displays a medium bodied, energetic texture, beautiful integration of the acid, tannin, and fruit, and a clean, excellent finish. It ‟ s not a powerhouse and shines for its balance, purity, and energy. While I would drink it over the coming 2-4 years, this could surprise and age well. Time will tell. (91 pts.)