The causse - a high plateau of limestone and marine fossills, with the Pyrenees to the south

Clos du Gravillas: Glorious Wines from St. Jean de Minervois in the Languedoc!

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Nicole and John Bojanowski at the Clos des Gravillas are making some of the most delicious, profound and just plain delightful wines in the South of France! In 1996, Nicole, from Narbonne, convinced her American husband John, from Kentucky, that the stones of St Jean de Minervois were the most beautiful in the world. It was a real choice of life, to a village of 45 souls, and of Terroir: the white limestone and marine fossils of the high causse northwest of Beziers. This dazzling terroir is reminiscent of the moon, and inspired their representation of the estate.

"The 9 ha vineyard on the Causse, at an altitude of 270 metres, benefits from a providential coolness descending from the Montagnes Noires on summer nights. The very mineral landscape makes it possible to imagine the nature of the wines. Biodiversity is a watchword, we are within the Haut Languedoc Natural Park and in a Natura 2000 protected area.

Organic farming, of course. Agroforestry is practiced with the establishment or restoration of trees and hedges. An ideal "oasis" that serves as a refuge and creates havens of freshness. A living soil is essential to reflect a terroir and make unique wines. In addition to the biodynamic preparations, the vineyard is planted with legumes and grasses to create a mulch/ground cover and not leave the soil bare."

Autumn at Clos du Gravillas

Indeed the location is extraordinary - a plateau surrounded by hills and mountains, composed of solid limestone with "soil" of limestone rocks and fossilized seashells. John and Nicole are serious, experience winemakers who take advantage of this unusual spot to make profound wines of terroir that are both incredibly delicious and great fun to drink - in the true spirit of wine as a beverage to be shared and enjoyed. From the complex, delicate and beautifully made orange wine "A Fleur de Peau" to the dark and brooding Carignan "Lo Vielh" from 110 year-old vines, here is a rage of wines that is joyful and creative - we invite you to try them all! (Only available in the US at Chambers Street Wines!)

Carignan vines in the limestone soils

The estate has received excellent recent reviews in the Revue du Vin de France and Decanter and is highly respected by organic/natural wine-lovers in France. A quick overview of the wines:

2022 "Jour de Teuf" - A scintillating, bone-dry Pet Nat from Muscat Petits Grains, refreshing & delicous!  No SO2.

2021 A Fleur du Peau - A beautiful orange wine from Muscat, incredibly complex, perfect, long finish. A 2022 Wine of the Year  in Decanter!   

2022 "Emmenez-Moi au Bout de Terret" - Vibrant white from the ancient Languedoc variety Terret Gris, aged in sandstone egg and anfora, all minerals & citrus - bring on the oysters or fried fish...

2022 "Happy, comme un dimanche a la Plage" - Ultralight white of Terret Gris from tiny grapes macerated on Muscat skins. 10% alcohol, really fun and fresh, perfect for a picnic or a Sunday at the beach...

2022 "I'm Alive!" - Ultralight red from Picpoul Gris, Blanc and Noir with Cinsault that caresses the taste buds with cherry fruit and plum skin, light but sapid and long and very, very  easy to drink, serve very cool!

2021 "Sous les Cailloux, des Grillons" - Eight varieties blended for a ripe, fresh flavor of "garrigue," serve cool with grilled foods this summer, great value...

2021 "Rendez-Vous sur la Lune" - A superb traditional Minervois red from Carignan, Syrah and Cinsault grown on the unique limestone terroir, full-bodied and ripe, with great freshness and length.

2021 "Côté Obscur" - "a blend of Carignan and Cabernet Sauvignon which gives a deep wine with aromas of black fruits, ink and leather.

2020 "Lo Vielh" - From Carignan planted in 1911. These vines give a wine that speaks with great depth and finesse, with notes of thyme and bay leaf. The best food pairing: guinea hen!

2022 "Douce Providence" - A beautiful Muscat St Jean de Minervois from Muscat Petits Grains. Insanely delicios with beautiful aromas of apricots, roses and citrus. The perfect summer aperitif, or with fruit desserts.

Wines are in stock, more inventory arrives 6/27. 10% case/mixed case discount applies - try them all!

John with "pioche," hand-tilling

 

Gravillas 2021 Vin de France Côté Obscur

The Clos du Gravillas "Cote Obscur" is "a blend of Carignan and Cabernet Sauvignon which gives a deep wine with aromas of black fruits, ink and leather. When the old scoundrels of Carignan meet the beautiful and dashing Cabernet Sauvignons from the mountains..." Very ripe black fruit on the nose whilst the palate hews more towards tart cassis and dusty earthy notes. Medium bodied with supple tannins;  an excellent wine for a wide variety of cuisines and dishes such as cheese and charcuterie, barbecue and hamburgers. Giselle Hamburg

  • red
  • 5 in stock
  • $19.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Gravillas 2022 Muscat St. Jean de Minervois Doux Providence 500ml

The 2022 Clos du Gravillas "Douce Providence" is a real treasure of the south of France - Muscat St. Jean de Minervois made with Muscat Petits Grains. Beautiful, delicate aromas of white rose petal, lime flower, citrus. The palate is silky and supple and lightly sweet with flavors of apricot and peach, hints of green tea, coconut and minerals, finishing with ripe citrus and refreshing acidity. Serve quite cool, yum!

  • white medium-sweet
  • 13 in stock
  • $18.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur
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Gravillas 2022 Vin de France Jour de Teuf Pet Nat

The Clos du Gravillas "Jour de Teuf" is a vibrant Pet-Nat mad from Muscat Petits Grains grown in the rocky limestone vineyards of the Haut Minervois. The grapes are picked a bit unripe, then bottled after an initial fermentation with about 17 grams/liter of residual sugar, which then ferments and finishes dry with beautiful sparkle. This is a joyous and lively pet-nat, a hazy straw in the glass with just a touch of sweetness balanced by vibrant acidity. There's some apple fruit and a hint of earth but endless refreshment. Upon tasting we were all in agreement that this would be a perfect aperitif, or an ideal "breakfast wine" for all you bibulous brunch lovers.

  • Out of Stock
  • white sparkling
  • 0 in stock
  • $19.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur

Gravillas 2022 Vin de France Emmenez-Moi Au Bout du Terret

"A dry, light, original and refreshing white made with Terret Gris. We love this native Languedoc grape variety which thrives on our limestone soil on the Cazelles plateau. To reinforce its mineral side, it is vinified and aged in a sandstone egg and earthen amphoras. Rather floral aromas and marine iodine or ocean breeze with ripe pear and melon. The palate has more ocean spray and juicy fruit complemented with some savory garrigue. Perfect with shellfish, lean fish and lemon chicken... (of course there's a play on words here as "emmenez-moi au bout de la terre" is "take me to the end of the earth.")

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $18.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Gravillas 2022 Vin de France Happy, comme un dimanche a la

Wow, this may be the most refreshing wine ever made! The Clos du Gravillas "Happy" is made from tiny grapes of Terret Gris that are macerated on Muscat skins, creating a fun, fresh, citrusy treat! Superaromatic out of the gate with aromas of spearmint and orange blossom. The palate is floral yet herbaceous with notes of mandarin and kumquats. Exuberant and a party in a glass!

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $16.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Gravillas 2021 Vin de France A Fleur de Peau

 "Our orange wine is a dry macerated Muscat (3 to 4 weeks) which combines the notes of Earl Gray tea, orange blossom and apricot. Perfect with roasted squash or mushrooms accompanied by smoked bacon. Very interesting with an apricot tagine. Also goes well with full-flavored cheeses such as raclette, Mont d’Or, tartiflette," "One of the greatest dry muscats in the world" said Decanter magazine. The high praise is warranted, as it strikes a captivating balance of subtle fruit - think lychee, citrus peel, and pear - with delicate floral aromatics that suggest walking through a breezy meadow in full bloom. Then just when you think you have this wine pinned down you get a rush of chiseled minerality on the palate, a welcome twist that gives it lift and balance while still retaining its airy weightlessness. On the second day there was an added layer of complexity, with some honey and deeper apricot fruit peeking through. The acidity is in perfect balance and even on the third day it was still singing, suggesting some aging potential. While it's not a heavy, powerful orange wine, it's equally compelling as it seems to shift in the glass from sip to sip - definitely a bottle worth contemplating over.

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $25.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Gravillas 2022 Vin de France I'm ALIVE! (Claret)

The 2022 Clos du Gravillas "I'm Alive!" is a "claret" - a very light red, perfect for summer, made from Picpoul Blanc, Gris, Noir and Cinsault, co-fermented. The color is a light, bright vermillion red. Delicate high-toned aromas of raspberry, cranberry, citrus, rose and white pepper. Tart cherry, raspberry and citrus flavors on the palate with a hint of tannin and nice sappy length of cherry fruit. Really refreshing and delicious, and too easy to drink, perfect for a picnic on a hot day or with any light cuisine. Serve quite cool and enjoy!

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $19.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Gravillas 2021 Vin de France Sous les Cailloux, des Grillon

Sous les Cailloux, des Grillons, means "under the rocks, crickets" - made from Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan, Grenache, and Terret noir, a red wine, frank and fresh—red fruit, fluidity and a touchof tannin. 8 days skin time for this blend of all our red varietals, aging in tank only. In St. Jean, the soil is only white gravel ; in our youngest vineyard, under these rocks innumerable crickets find shade from the scorching Mediterranean sun. At night they comeout to play (and during the day, they are under the rocks). The color is a vivid red/black, with fresh aromas of red currant, plum skin, rose and citrus, quite pretty. The palate is cool and silky with earthy plum, black raspberry fruit with hints of licorice and minerals with a nice chalky texure in the finish with refreshing acidity. Perfect hamburger wine! Or with grilled veggies, serve cool and enjoy!

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $14.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Gravillas 2021 Minervois Rendez vous Sur la Lune

The Clos du Gravillas Minervois "Sur La Lune" is a marriage of Carignan, Syrah and Cinsault on the lunar terroir of Cazelles. Vinified and aged in vats to give a tender and supple side. Deep and fresh at the same time, it smells of "garrigue." The wine shows a dark red/purple color with aromas of ripe berry fruits - black raspberry, blueberry - with citrus peel, floral notes, garrigue and licorice, really lovely. The palate is deep and ripe but nicely balanced with red and black fruits, minerals and firm acidity. Each grape contibutes beautifully to this classic Languedoc red that is not over-extrracted or tannic, that can accompany grilled meats, stews, tagines and full-flavored cheeses. Terrific wine and a great value. David Lillie

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $18.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Gravillas 2020 Vin de France Lo Vielh Carignan

(last of stock) The Clos des Gravillas "Lo Vielh" is from Carignan planted in 1911 that was the first vineyard purchased by Nicole and John, who saved it from being torn out. "The vines demand a lot of work and attention, but they pay it back. The soil is exceptional, lumpy as desired due to a very lively humus and a perfect stony limestone on the Terroir of Cazelles. These vines give a wine that speaks with great depth and finesse, with notes of thyme and bay leaf." The aromas are really fascinating - blackberry, blueberry, fig and violet. It's dark and almost inky in color but medium/light in body, velvety and deeply flavored, and has great freshness, with ample acidity and a lingering mineral finish. This would pair well with most dark meats but is particularly suited to anything gamey - the winemaker recommends guinea hen! It's a piece of Languedoc history that is unique and delicious - bravo to John and Nicole for saving the old vines.  David Lillie

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $24.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur