Saint Salonuis, Pinot Noir, Ile Saint Honorat, Vine de Pays des Mediterrainée, 2008, red-wine from France
The first time I drank this wine was at Cave Crevette in Cannes. I was looking for something unknown and had asked for something really local – and surprisingly they proposed a Pinot Noir from an island in the south of Cannes: Ile Saint Honorat. Obviously being very curious to taste a local Pinot Noir, this wine became a big discovery.
We all know that there is one domain of Pinot Noir in France, which is obviously Burgundy, and that many people would say this is the only area for something authentic – which is clearly stupid – since there are fantastic Pinot Noirs also in Germany, New Zealand, Hungary or even in Southern Tirol. There is one other little island which delivers fantastic French Pinot Noir.
You would expect to find grapes such as Syrah, Grenache or Mourvèdre in this region, but certainly not Pinot Noir. For me, this wine is one of the best but also one of the most unique Pinot Noir I know of. It is somehow very voluminous but also remarkably fresh. There is a note of pepper and you might even think you detect some salt in it. The soil must be rocky and stony as the wine has some unique mineral quality. Probably this has something to do with the weather conditions but perhaps the wind is different than on the mainland.
The wine is made at a monastery and it is a very limited production. This is probably also the reason why this wine is too expensive (€ 180 / bottle at the wineyard). They produce also a Syrah which I tasted and also liked very much, although it is less extraordinary. You can buy wine via their website: http://excellencedelerins.com/vins.html.
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