Tannat, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc
75cl * 14.5% ABV * Madiran, South West France
Château Montus was once referred to as “The Petrus of Madiran” by Decanter magazine columnist Andrew Jefford, and I don’t think I’d find many round here who would argue with him.
Winemaker Alain Brumont hosts the 'Rendez-Vous des Icônes' each year at the château, where he invites journalists (including that lucky Andrew Jefford bloke, above) to partake of blind tastings over a weekend. And those blind tastings include not only his own wines, but some of the best in the world such as La Mission, Angelus and Château Margaux from Bordeaux, a Châteauneuf-du-Pape from Beaucastel in the Rhone and California’s legendary Opus One. What a weekend! But the wines from Brumont’s Château Montus often stand up comparatively well, hence their grandiose nickname.
Evocative of concentrated, plummy fruit and baking spices, fine Gascon reds such as this are truly comparable to the Classed Growths of Bordeaux (such as Margaux). Large pebble stones, similar to those found in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, radiate the daytime sun and allow the famously stubborn Tannat grapes to sufficiently ripen. Madiran wines reward the patient, so at nearly a decade old this is finally ready to drink - ideally with rich venison dishes or puddings such as burnt Basque cheesecake with foraged blackberry compote.