Nonetheless, phrases like rustic are helpful even when solely as a tool for remembering what I used to be pondering as I drank the wine, which makes it mandatory to clarify additional in plainer language.
The phrase “rustic” is derived from the Latin rusticus, which suggests “the nation.” It was initially used to explain wines that lacked refinement, that have been easy and tough. In our fashionable age, the place the mainstream is filled with soulless, overly polished wines, rustic has additionally come to connote a kind of handmade distinctiveness. Once more, context is the whole lot.
As I do every month, I steered three bottles, to be consumed with household or pals with meals in a relaxed setting. The three Languedoc reds have been: Domaine d’Aupilhac Languedoc Lou Maset 2018, Domaine Faillenc Sainte Marie Corbières Rouge 2019 and Domaine de l’Hortus Pic Saint Loup Bergerie Classique Rouge 2019.
The d’Aupilhac was the wine that had me pondering rustic — I beloved it. It was a once-typical Languedoc mix, 40 p.c grenache, 40 p.c cinsault and 10 p.c every of carignan and mourvèdre; dry, with flavors of darkish and pink fruits and an underlying natural edge, with tannins that outweighed the density and focus of the wine however weren’t overwhelming.
What made it rustic to me? The natural qualities and the tannins, which made it really feel a bit tough, and really a lot of the Languedoc. The wine was refreshing and energetic, and it was my favourite of the three bottles.
The Faillenc Sainte Marie additionally appeared a tad rustic. It was mildly natural, with tough tannins, and vigorous, however it was deal extra sweetly fruity than the d’Aupilhac.
It might need been its mix of grapes — equal thirds syrah, grenache and cinsault. However extra possible it was the alcohol stage, 14 p.c as towards d’Aupilhac’s 12 p.c. The elevated ripeness of the grapes ends in a better sugar stage, which, when fermented, means extra alcohol. The candy fruit made it appear barely much less distinctive than the d’Aupilhac.