(Sept. 12, 2012) — The Brunier family has been producing Vieux Telegraphe for more than 100 years from the tiny little triangle of land called the Plateau de la Crau in southern Rhône. The vines range in age from 50-65 years old on just 75 hectares. The family continues with long established traditions developed over decades of loving stewardship. This does not mean they stand still and rest on their laurels. In 2000 there was a soil study performed on Plateau de la Crau and the two brothers that currently run the winery, Daniel and Frederic admit that they are still learning. Their philosophy is careful minimalist including a green harvest and leaf stripping to manage yields and encourage ripening, followed by manual harvesting and a double sorting before vinification. To minimize the grape worm pest, they use pheromones in the vineyard, confusing the adult butterflies and reducing their breeding capacity as a result. Reading about them, they don’t examine every grape but it seems that way.
Each year’s blend is created from a blind tasting of the wines from one vintage after double fermentation and a year of aging in large oak casks. The blend is primarily Grenache, and Syrah, with occasionally Mourvèdre, Cinsault and others. Two flavours that differentiate this wine above all other in Southern Rhône are cherry and garrigue (forest floor). In younger wines red cherries dominate adding a touch of sweetness which trend to dark cherries as the backbone as the wine ages.
We will taste three decades of this premium wine and invite you to explore an old family’s tradition, on old vines, using methods developed over a century to produce this exceptional wine. Included in our tasting are 1982, 1985, 1994, 1999, 2000, 2004, 2007 and 2008.
Andrew Hannah from winetrader will be our guest speaker. He has a good relationship with the winemaker and has collected all kinds of specifics on the vintages that we will be tasting.
As always with our tastings, this event will be strictly non-smoking, and we request your cooperation in not wearing any scented after-shave or perfume.