I’m picking out wines for my tasting, which has been a pretty fun enterprise. The latest contender is this Mouressipe Cuvée Càcous ($22), from the Languedoc, a huge wine-producing region in southern France. I only know it’s from the Languedoc thanks to some Googling, as there’s very little information on the label. That’s because the producer, Alain Allier, decided to create his wine outside of the traditional French “appellation côntrolée” system — that is, the rigid set of rules and regulations that governs production of the highest quality French wines. If you’re an up-and-coming winemaker in a dynamic region like the Languedoc, then some of these rules can crush your entrepreneurial spirit. By opting out of the system, you get a lot of freedom. However, you also have to label your wine a “Vin de Table,” the same category that also includes a lot of crap, like the big 1.5 L bottles of generic French wine you find on the bottom back shelves of your wine store.
This wine is definitely not crap. It smells intensely of pomegranates and sour cherry pie, and tastes like it, too. Made from Grenache and Syrah, it’s pretty full-bodied and has great acidity, which would help it stand up to richer autmunal fare (alluded to here by the decorative pumpkin…the Tennessee water glass was just for fun). I think it would be great with a tagine or spiced lamb shanks. The wine is organic, with no added sulfites and is unfined and unfiltered, which helps to explain why it’s a tad cloudy in the glass. This is a really vibrant, unusual wine — I’ll definitely be pouring it on the 14th, so stop by Heights Chateau from 5-7 if you’d like a taste!