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Languedoc to introduce Grand Cru...

>> Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Some areas in the Languedoc, that fulfil certain criteria, will be classified as Grand Cru according to a new proposal from the producers association, the CIVL. They want to have two levels: Grands Vins du Languedoc and Grand Cru du Languedoc. Grands Vins will include Minervois, Corbières, Saint Chinian, sparkling Limoux, Malpère, Faugères, Cabardès, muscat (we assumes this means in general for the muscat wines) and some parts of Terroirs de Coteaux du Languedoc, according to The Drinks Business.

Grand Cru would include Minervois La Livinière, Corbières Boutenac, Saint Chinian Roquebrun, Terrasses du Larzac, Grès du Montpellier, Pic Saint Loup, Pézenas, La Clape and still wines from Limoux. The idea is to make it easier for the consumer (we’re not convinced it is obvious to the consumer what the difference is between Grand Vin and Grand Cru). “This will mould the future of the Languedoc region for the next 15 years” says Jerome Villaret of the CIVL, according to DB.

Perhaps. Or it will take the Languedoc down the path to where some “classified” regions are today, where a hierarchy imposes a straitjacket on the producers and stifles creativity and initiative. And it is undoubtedly so that in each of the districts there are some very good producers but also some mediocre ones. Just as there are outstanding producers who are outside of these regioins (or who do not follow the appellation rules to 100%). A classification is also often a way to protect those that “inside” from unpleasant competition from those that are “outside” of the category. It is not clear to us if the plans have been given the go-ahead by the INAO, the French control authority, or not.

We remember (as the diligent reader of the Brief perhaps does too) when Chaume Premier Cru was launched as an appellation, only to be annulled by a court a short time later since it could be misleading for consumers. In other words: we are not convinced. Read more:

What do you think? Good idea? Or folly?


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