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Bila-Haut by M. Chapoutier, Occultum Lapidem Blanc Cotes du Roussillon 2017

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93 points Wine Spectator
"A refined, powerful white, with enveloping flavors of almond, white peach and spiced apple infused with wool, baking spice and vivid mineral elements. Dried flowers, heather, matchstick and honey notes mesh together on the long, lingering finish. Grenache Blanc, Grenache Gris and Vermentino. Drink now through 2024. 400 cases made, 60 cases imported."

92 points Jeb Dunnuck
"The 2017 Côtes du Roussillon Occultum Lapidem Blanc is a blend of 65% Grenache Blanc, 30% Grenache Gris, and the balance Vermentino, all from Gneiss soils. This medium gold-colored (there's a touch of grey) wine offers a distinct salty minerality as well as notes of citrus and lime, tangerine peel, and crushed rocks. It's fresh, vibrant, and crisp, with a classy, balanced, complex style that’s a joy to drink."

Jancis Robinson
"Mainly Grenache Blanc with around 40% Grenache Gris and a little bit of Vermentino in Latour de France at the end of the Agly Valley. 70% fermented in tank, the rest in oak, mainly demi-muid and mainly new.
Such a contrast to the Granilites 2018 Marsanne. Rich, intense pears and stone fruit, more oxidative without being at all oxidised: nutty, woody/cedary. Big and mouth-filling with a touch of bitter orange on the palate. Immense freshness for a big wine. Long, spicy and woody (not oaky). 17/20 points. (JH)

Vinous Reverie Notes
Blend70% Grenache blanc, 30% Vermentino. Purchased by Michel Chapoutier in 1999, Bila-Haut is located in the best part of the Languedoc called the Côtes du Roussillon. Historically the site was one of the first areas planted for viticulture by the Greek Mariners and has been continuously a wine region known for making top quality wines. The House of Bila, the translation of the name of the estate, was once a house of refuge for the Knights Templar, which is why their cross is symbolically used on the label. In the hills of the Agly Valley, 40+ year old vines are carefully and meticulously managed by an experienced team of viticulturalists, where sustainable farming and low yields combine to create the highest quality fruit. Wine is made in the vineyards, by paying careful attention to the plants and working alongside nature. The complexity of Bila-Haut reflects the diverse terroirs and the wind of the Midi. By meticulously hand harvesting the best grapes from the best vineyards of the Roussillon, Michel Chapoutier has transformed his magic to the Languedoc and created a wine with finesse. These wines are produced biodynamically and express the best terroir of the region. Occultum Lapidem means “Hidden Gem” in Latin. Tasting notes: A blend of Grenache Blanc and Vermentino, with scents of apple rind, melon rind, lanolin and lemon oil. The palate offers more waves of lanolin, citrus oil and beeswax, with just a hint of toasty character like dried straw and honeycomb cereal.


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