We have limited stock of the 2009 Bécassier produced at the splendid Domaine du Deffends, sited between the foothills of Monts Auréliens and the ancient Via Aurélia Roman road, some 25 miles to the East of Aix-en-Provence in the depths of the Var. The property, bought by the de Lanversin family in 1963, has been certified organic (Ecocert) since 2009.
The Bécassier in question are the woodcock who wander these vineyards, or at least their hunters. This quite tricky shot makes delicious eating, perhaps with chicken liver pâté and a Cumberland sauce, but we digress - although the wine's name is peculiarly appropriate.
This Bécassier cuvée has been blended from fruity Grenache, local favourite Cinsault, powerful Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. The Syrah's depth is undoubtedly enhanced by the hard hand-pruning (effeuillage sounds so much better) it receives. The blended grapes are macerated for two weeks and treaded two or three times per day and slowly fermented with only natural yeasts. Having rested in tanks the final product is bottled without fining in the spring following the harvest.