Immortelle, Cotes de Roussillon
Immortelle is a wine-making project by Master of Wine Liam Steevenson, however it not a wine that was ever designed to reflect him, but much more the remarkable region from which it comes. It is a wine of outstanding quality produced within the Roussillon, in the foothills of the Pyrénées. Although the wine varies from vintage to vintage, dependent on conditions, it is a wine that always combines freshness and vitality, a characteristic which stems from the soil and the climate. The soil is granitic and poor. The climate is hard and extreme, combining the heat of the Southern sun with the cold and rain of the mountains at a height of between 350 and 600 metres, and the effects of the Tramontane wind. The vineyard sites are primarily in Tautavel and Latour de France are principally composed of extremely old vines, many over 100 years old, and planted with Carignan, Syrah, Mourvedre and Grenache Noir.
The vineyards are spread on 40 hectares in the Agly Valley, 20 km north of Perpignan and planted & Vineyards have been planted and developed for four generations by the Bousquet family with three generations still involved; the grand-father, Franck, the father, and Benoit, the son. The vineyard selections cover the four key terroirs of the region: Gneiss with the AOP Côtes du Roussillon Villages Latour de France. Chalk and Clay with the AOP Côtes du Roussillon Villages Tautavel.
The winemaking is extremely simple; hand harvested grapes, are fermented in open barrels, with simple punch down of the cap, wetting, pressing, filling and stirring all done by hand. 18 months in 500 litre French and Austrian Demi- Muids. The aim is to avoid power and aggression, instead looking for elegance and balance in the wine. Every vintage is different, so while our philosophy remains the same, the work in the winery is flexible and is adapted to suit each year. We are looking for wine that is both pleasurable to drink and reflects its origin.
Immortelle is a flower, indigenous to the Roussillon that grows amongst our vines. Its beauty incredibly is not lost when picked, as it name alluded the flower looses neither colour or structure after it has been picked. We made Immortelle the wine to both reflect place, be indigenous and last long in the bottle. A happy combination of wine and label.