Jones On the QT Bin 27 Orange Macabeu 2020 France
Just 450 bottles of this wine made. It’s from a 60 year old vineyard called Colombiers in Tuchan. Organic, pruned for low yields, with limestone/clay soils. The wine was made in a 1100 litre tank: 40 crates (15 kg each) were added whole bunch, followed by 10 crates of destemmed fruit, and it was sealed up for 6 days to allow carbonic maceration to begin. Then after this, the fizzy grapes were pressed and fermentation carried on in small used oak barrels, with minimal sulfites during the winemaking process. Ferment reached a maximum of 24 C. Macabeu is also known as Macabeo in Spain; in Rioja it is Viura, and is the most widely planted white variety. Little known fact: as recently as 1975 there were more white grapes in Rioja than red. It’s a grape that can over-produce, and it can also lose acidity fast.
Here, the result is a pale orange wine with lovely texture, a fine spiciness and notes of pear, apple and white peach. There’s some fresh acidity, and also a bit of tannic grip which adds to the impression of freshness. It’s not a heavy wine, though – there is some delicacy and precision, with mandarin brightness on the finish. There’s a hint of green tea, too. 92/100 (450 bottles produced: this will be stocked in Waitrose in the UK)