Appellation: Vin de France.
Cuvée: Petit Taureau.
Colour: Red.
Grapes: Carignan Noir, Syrah and Mourvèdre, exact blend depends on the year, see below.
About: named after a song by Claude Nougaro from 1967 filled with references to wine, women and song, “Je suis un petit taureau…”. An extraordinary wine that captures the terroir, the Mediterranean, the Carignan fruit but wears a gentle lightness and freshness that could place it much further north. The wine is about blending limestone and schist, young and old vines, yin and yang.

Vines

Location: around Calce.
Size ha: 4.
Age: vines planted Carignan in 1900 and 1978, Grenache Noir in 1955, Syrah in 1980, and Mourvèdre in 1998.
Soils: Carignan from 1900 on limestone, from 1978 on red clay, the other grapes from schist.
Exposition: various.
Altitude: 240 to 300m.
Training: gobelet.
Farming: organic and biodynamic.
Average yield hl/ha: 35.
Climate: Mediterranean.

Winemaking

Made in two 25hl concrete tanks, one with younger vine fruit, one with older vine fruit. Two thirds of the harvest put into tank whole bunch while one third of the harvest is pressed directly and the juice added to the whole bunches. Usually it’s the Syrah and Mourvèdre that’s pressed direct. It’s left to macerate for a week before being pressed and returned to tank to finish fermenting. Some years see use of cold but less so from 2018. No added yeasts or sulfites or anything else. Ages 8 months in concrete before bottling with a light filtration and addition sulfites.

Vintage Notes 2017
Yield hl/ha: 20.
Harvested: .
Bottles produced: .
Date bottled: 2018-05.
Alcohol %: 12.98.
SO2 Total: 24.
Tasting: very aromatic with a floral, red berry, red cherry fruit, racy acidity, plump, juicy tannins and mineral core, fluid, energetic.

Vintage Notes 2018
A fine season, there was little of the rain that caused mildew pressure all around, so the season was defined by a stable flowering and relatively cool summer.
Yield hl/ha: 25
Harvested: August 23 to September 3
Bottles produced: 10,000
Date bottled: 2019-05
Alcohol %: 12.5
SO2 Total:
Tasting: dense but silky tannins, racy acidity, airy perfumed fruit, with red berry, yellow and white fruit character. 2021-02-16 with time the Calice carignan has come out and the wine become almost severe, sauvage with a ‘brutal’ energy, with perfectly ripe black and red fruit, a salty finish. Super.

Vintage Notes 2019
Dry winter followed by early Spring rain, stable flowering, then marked by a run of heatwaves in the summer causing hydric stress, drought.
Yield hl/ha: 20
Harvested: end August early September
Bottles produced: 12,000
Date bottled: 2020-06
Alcohol %: 13.4
SO2 Total:
Tasting: 2021-02-16 very different from the smokey, mineral, wild character of the 2018, this is rich and plump with super-ripe cassis, black cherry, dark chocolate, earthy, peppery. Great energy, rounded, fine.

Vintage Notes 2020
After the hydric stress of 2019, the beginning of the season was particularly wet, a real challenge, with huge mildew pressure, which didn’t really end until late July, not so warm either, then a very early harvest end of August. The most challenging year since 2003, to which the best vignerons rise. As if mildew wasn’t enough, wild boar ate grapes with abandon. The hunters had been banned due to covid restrictions in one of the season’s many absurdities.
Yield hl/ha: 25
Harvested: end August early September
Bottles produced: 12,000
Date bottled: 2021-06
Alcohol %: 13
SO2 Total: 0
Tasting: 2021-02-16 like a synthesis of 2018 and 2019. Bodes well.