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Hegarty Chamans, No3 La Piboule, 2015

Hegarty Chamans is co-owned by Sir John Hegarty and his wife Philippa. They purchased the estate in 2002 and invested heavily, becoming a leading Minervois producer. 15Ha of vines are located in the south facing foothills of the Montagne Noire in the Minervois region of the Languedoc, surrounded by garrigue and woodland. Their top wine – Black Knight – has considerable reputation.

Since purchasing the domaine the couple decided to ensure the vineyards would be free from any chemical farming to support the biodiversity of the site. They were certified organic by AB in 2010 and certified biodynamic by Demeter in 2011. They keep a flock of sheep to control the weeds that grow between the vines and provide natural fertiliser, and practice beekeeping to encourage pollination. The vineyards are surrounded by forest in a protected nature reserve area.

All grapes are dry-farmed. Hand harvesting only.

In the cellar they use a combination of concrete and large format 325hl barrels to encourage only restrained oak influence. They avoid the appellation's often over-extraction in favour of seeking out elegance and precision – long, but gentle extractions of around four weeks. Only natural yeasts are used for fermentations. Long elevage brings complexity to the wines.

Cuvée No3 La Piboule is a blend of Carignan, Syrah and Mourvèdre.

Aged in concrete tanks for 30 months, on fine lees. This wine from their portfolio sees no oak barrels.

The nose is complex with aromas of black fruits, red fruits and a surprising touch of toast and nuts, despite ageing in only concrete vats. The palette is full with ripe blackcurrant, plum and fine, well integrated tannins. Full of character and energy.

Drink now or hold for another 3 to 4 years of ageing.