Andrew Guard

2019 Vin de Pays de la Côte Vermeille 'La Luna', Bruno Duchêne

This rare beauty is always a silky, sensual delight - made from Grenache it displays complex aromas of strawberry , black-cherry, citrus, violet, plum skin and earth. Intense fruit on the fresh, medium-bodied palate, with blackberry freshness - on the finish there is a silky texture with lively acidity with suggestions at rose water and fabulous length.

Bruno owns just 4 hectares spread over 4 areas, all on decomposed schistose soils at an altitude of around 300m - each parcel differing slightly in exposition. The vineyards in Collioure are extremely low yielding and, as they are planted on terraced hillsides, very difficult to work mechanically, which like in Germany's Mosel region, has contributed to a growing abandonment of these legendary sites. This is a great shame as the real character of any regions wines is defined by it's original terroir
Bruno produces three red wines: La Luna, Pascole and Anodine (Anodine only in magnum). They are all produced almost entirely from Grenache but also includes a little Carignan. Instead of highlighting different terroirs with separate bottlings, Bruno bottles based on his various farming practices. For La Luna, he lets grass grow free. Pascole is partially ploughed by hand. Finally, Anodine represents the areas that are impossible to work mechanically, and where the soil work has to be done entirely by hand. He also produces an exquisite white, Vallpompo, from Grenache Blanc.

These are incredibly rare and delicious wines. Unfortunately there will never be enough to go around as the small production has loyal (and passionate) demand placed on it with each vintage