Young gun, new wave Bandol
Established five years, a visit to this domaine in Sanary-sur-Mer, just outside of the town of Bandol, reveals the energy and buzz familiar at the best ‘young gun’ operations. There’s hunger, ambition, a streak of mischief and humour, experience working overseas as well as with the big local names (Domaine Tempier no less), and above all, major talent and skill.
Headed up by winemaking duo Clément Minne and Pauline Giraud, this small domaine will be a force to follow and makes an interesting counterpoint to the ‘old guard’ Bandol producers currently represented in Australia. All fruit is hand harvested, vineyards not owned outright are leased and fully domaine managed, and the wines are not only spectacular, but exceptional value considering the provenance.
DOMAINE GUEISSARD BANDOL ‘RESTANQUES’ ROSÉ 2015
45% Mourvèdre, 35% Cinsault, 20% Grenache. Screwcap.
A beautiful rosé of seasonal transparancy, vintage 2015 sees this wine in tip top form. An incredible purity and intensity of fruit, this kicks the nose with passionfruit, red currant and gooseberry, with a little saline sweat - not at all dissimilar to a smart Sauvignon. It's a two speed wine, with a super high guzzle factor, yet to give it attention reveals serious complexity and layers.
"Faint charcuterie characters amongst sour cherry, sweet spice, briary notes, pomegranate and some oyster shell notes. The palate is lean but flavoursome, tightly wound, set around cherry pip and rosy fruit flavours with a minerally core. It’s precise, refreshing, mouthwatering stuff. Yummo, if that is a technical descriptor." 92 points, Mike Bennie, Winefront
DOMAINE GUEISSARD 'LE PETIT G' IGP MEDITERRANÉE ROSÉ 2016
35% Grenache, 35% Syrah, 30% Cinsault. Screwcap
The Little G - a new wine for us this year to boost our value end offerings. Made with a lot of care considering its level - grapes are hand harvested and manually sorted for starters. Provence style through and through, it's of beautiful salmon shade, with a nose of zesty citrus and lemon drops, the palate fruit driven and crunchy, with some of Gueissard's house style showing through - a teeny bit of guava skin, red currants, strawberries and frozen raspberries. Cracking dry, light, refreshing, a lovely aperitif style. Summer in a bottle.
"Good times rose with sweet, floral perfume and tangy flavour profile. Thirst slaking stuff with drinkability on point. It offers cherry pip and rose hip tea scents, flavours running a similar course. There a little extra generosity and width in the wine but the fine, salty acidity bring the wine alive. Really delicious. Touch of complexity. Great buying." 90 points, Mike Bennie, Winefront
DOMAINE GUEISSARD BANDOL CUVÉE G ROUGE 2011
70% Mourvèdre, 15% Grenache, 15% Cinsault.
Red Bandol is all too under-appreciated in Australia, with the wild fruits and invigorating acid of the Mourvèdre grape making this a seriously appealing style. Initially coiled, this gives way to plum, vintage Port fruit and crunchy forest berries carrying a little baking spice, tobacco and dark chocolate flavours. A clean style, there’s a lovely density to the flavours which continue to open with air, nodding to a promising future in the cellar, though it’s pretty delicious already. Some crunchy minerals to finish and sinewy tannins render this a very complete package.