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Domaine Famille Ligneres: Aric, 2002

December 11, 2007

~$28US Carignan 60%, Mourvèdre 25%, Syrah 15%, Languedoc-Roussillon, France

Deep purple. A some clear barnyard poopieness on first opening. Aromatic – after the funk blew off, serious cherry and blackberries. Medium-bodied on the palate, lean, and biased towards acidity. Cherries and red fruits coming through on the palate, a strange mix of fresh acidity and damp, earthy straw. Transitions from a round, chewey entry to a sharper, bright midpalate. Long finish that starts sweet, almost confectionery – but a note of orange-pip-bitteress detracts. The carignan seems to characterize this as a more classic wine, with old-world stoicism – the mourvedre and syrah adding the fruity dimensions. Actually opening up quite nicely for a 5-year old Languedoc-Roussillon – I could see this staying fresh for another 3-4 years.

Overall, very easy to drink and not terribly complex, as long as you are okay with a little old-skool funk. It reminds me of a big, earthy Barbera d’alba, or a simple village Burgundy on steroids. Food required for total enjoyment. It worked with braised short ribs, but would work even better with an rustic wild mushroom risotto or braised pork belly. Well made and distinctive, but I can’t decide if this is rebuy – even at the price I paid (well below the $28 retail), as there are so many Barberas, Pinots, and Rhone-blends out there…

Edit – On day 2 I retasted and I realized that the Siete 7 Navarra I had, at half the price, had just as much to offer…

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