It may not be the summer we were all planning for, but we can still sip through the long summer evenings with a trio of French wines, starring Chardonnay from Paul Mas. We shared a bottle with organic wine connoisseur Honey, as she painted a portrait of man behind the vine.
The magic of Monsieur Mas
You have to give credit to those who realise their life’s vocation at a young age; those who are unequivocally set in their destiny from the get-go. No better example of this can be found than in the Languedoc’s star winemaker and négociant Jean-Paul Mas, who, at the age of 3 worked his first vintage in his family’s vineyard and according to legend, never stopped to look back!
Several decades later and the expanse of land under Jean-Paul’s dominion extends over 600 hectares, with a further 1,300 hectares managed in collaboration with local growers, all organically-certified. What makes this organic operation such a feat - lies within the region itself, and its vast myriad of terrains, climates and grape varieties planted in the vineyards throughout. Jean-Paul and his colleagues work with over 40 varieties, carefully assessing each individual vineyard parcel and the varieties within to achieve their most authentic (not to mention tastiest!) bottled expressions. From silky-smooth Chardonnays, to spritzy Sauvignons, comforting Cabernets to spicy Syrahs and a multitude in-between, it’s fair enough to say Jean-Paul is one busy monsieur.
One of the most interesting recent developments in the domain is Jean-Paul’s decision to make some of his wines without the use of any added sulphur. The use of SO2 in winemaking has been used for centuries as a preservative and agent to prevent oxidation but there is a popular theory that wines without added sulphur taste all-together better and more expressive of their terroir. For those sensitive to sulphites, these wines may prove to be easier-going and enjoyable than others. What is certain is that the fewer interferences a winemaker makes in the vineyard and in the cellar, whether that be farming organically or eschewing from the use of preservatives like sulphur, shows a level of dedication to nature and honest winemaking that is certainly worth raising a glass to. Santé!
This speaks volumes for the work of Jean-Paul and his family of vinegrowers over the last 30 years, and their dedication in making some of the purest and very best expressions of the Languedoc region.
So whatever your fancy, let’s raise a glass to Jean-Paul!
The French Wine Case
This summer, we're taking a flight of fancy to France. Head to our website for all the organic goodies you need to create your own staycation, from croissants to crisp chardonnay.