Château La Baronne - Les Chemins
Carignan, Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre
Corbieres AOP, Languedoc, France
This is a postcard from the estate. A combination of all the red varietals but dominated by old-vine Carignan. Intense flavours of fresh blackberry, cherry and cocoa. There is a hint of heat, not like that from alcohol, but rather from white pepper. Superb weight and balance from a renowned organic and biodynamic vineyard.
Very low sulphites, no oak, natural yeast and meticulous viticulture and winemaking lead to a powerful yet elegant wine.
The story behind Château La Baronne is a modern day tale of a medical family with wine in their veins. Jean (the village doctor, like his father before him) and his wife Anne, look after the estate. The Lignères family ties to the wine world can be traced back to the sixteenth century, but it was in 1957 that Jean's parents André and Suzette Lignères bought the estate.
Today, the approach to winemaking in Château la Baronne is influenced by the medical background of its owners. As a doctor, Jean Lignères looks after his vines as he does his patients. He avoids strong chemicals in favour of building up the immunity of the vine — all farming and bottling is done according to organic and biodynamic methods.
When you visit Château la Baronne, you begin to understand precisely what goes into producing the Lignères family's exceptional wines. On our last visit to the estate, we were greeted by the family, the vineyard dog Doushka and a small army of adorable puppies. If juggling medical practices and a vineyard isn't enough; they were treating and rehoming some abandoned puppies (in between tastings). We continued our journey through the vineyards to experience the look, feel and smell of the terroir of the Alaric Mountain. The vines are well-tended, happy, healthy, and full of beautiful biodiversity and the winery is a fantastical place of experimentation, including Jean's custom-designed egg-shaped clay vessels for vinification and storage. The last stop on tour is the tasting room where it all starts to make sense. One can taste the respect of land and all living things, meticulous attention to detail, and the loving care in each wine produced by the Lignères family.
Another trip to Château la Baronne proves yet again that wonderful people make wonderful wine.
"A very stylish, big, powerful, chewy, savoury wine packed with ripe dark fruit, cloves and liquorice. Perfect with herby, garlicky barbecued lamb."
"Although it’s organically produced and even the bottling is done according to the biodynamic calendar this is not strictly a 'natural' wine but this won’t bother many people. It’s from Corbieres and is made by a doctor and pharmacist husband and wife team along with their children, all of whom are in healthcare. There’s ripe brambly fruit with a touch of dark chocolate and pepper, grippy tannins and lovely length."
"Rich, powerful and tasty red made from carignan, syrah and grenache. Organically made, unfiltered, low sulphites."