Small barrels an ultimate fusion of wine and art
For me, art and wine go hand in hand. The enigmatic flavours and aromas are akin to the expressive brushstrokes and colours of a painting. Both offer a real sensory enjoyment: taking you on a journey from the vineyard to the bottle or from the scene to the canvas. What excites me is the chance to discover something new: a rare vintage, an up and coming local artist or a totally new concept.
I am not sure if it is my French heritage or my bordering-on-obsession love of wine, but some of my favourite paintings are of wine. Van Gogh's The Drinkers, Picasso's The Wine Bottle and Salvador Dali's Still Life Moving Fast. Even though they are an eclectic mix of artistic styles, there is something about each painting that piques my interest. Looking at these masterpieces, it is like discerning the flavours of a new wine: an unidentifiable itch of an aroma you cannot place or a half-forgotten memory stirred by a scent.
At Le Vignoble we have always cultivated the idea of exploring wines and trying new and unusual vintages. That is why we are so pleased to be the sole distributor of the ultimate fusion of wine and art: the Puech Haut Barriques. The small wine barrels are the brainchild of wine-maker Gérard Bru and are decorated with unique artwork from renowned international artists as well as regional painters and sculptors from the Languedoc-Roussillon region. Now considered collectors' items, they include drawings from the creative minds of Jean-Paul Bocaj, Joel Petillault and Marc Guyot and offer a diverse array of vibrant colours, themes and styles.
The white, rosé and red wines inside the barrels are from the Château Puech-Haut, one of the most beautiful estates in Languedoc and considered to produce some of the finest wines in the region. The white is a Marsanne, Rousanne Rolle blend, the rosé: Cin sault, Grenache and Mouvedre. Both are soft and refreshing on the palate. The red is a Syrah and Grenache which is quite a powerful blend but this is more of a soft, juicy style.
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There is something about storing wine in works of art that truly adds to the flavour, proving the saying "the first taste is with the eyes".
Yannick Loué is owner of boutique wine lounge Le Vignoble, Royal William Yard, Plymouth.