Tasting notes: Cave de l’Ormarine, Picpoul de Pinet
Cave de l’Ormarine, Picpoul de Pinet is a gently perfumed, ripe melon fruit on the nose. Therefore the palate is ripe but retains excellent freshness. Balanced by a touch of white pepper spice that is very typical of its grape variety. Deliciously long, the finish shows bright fruit and a clean, saline/mineral edge.
Picpoul vines grow just inland from the Étang de Thau, home to southern Languedoc’s famous oyster and mussel beds. Along the coast you’ll find cabins where locals gather to feast on mussels or ‘huitres braisees’ (oysters cooked over a fire pit). These are perfect with a glass of Picpoul de Pinet.
Cave de l’Ormarine’s vineyards lie at approximately 40 metres above sea level on a chalky clay plateau, rich in Cretaceous limestone and quartz. The vineyards lie to the North of the Lac de Thau and slope towards it. Ormarine’s head winemaker Cyril Payon makes this Duc de Morny cuvée with a premium selection of grapes from 15+ year old vines.
Harvested at night to retain their aromatic freshness. After that, they are de-stemmed and macerated on their skins followed by a fifteen-day fermentation without malolactic fermentation.
Cave de l’Ormarine is an award-winning co-operative which produces wines from the tiny Pinet de Picpoul appellation in the Hérault. The Ormarine cellar was established in 1922 when vignerons from Pinet joined forces and formed a winegrowers’ association.
Today, the Cave de l’Ormarine is a conglomeration of five separate co-operatives from across the Hérault, each with their own specific terroirs and styles of wine. It is proud to have 470 members farming more than 2,500 hectares of vines.
Its flagship Picpoul wines are fresh and terroir-driven, and hugely influenced by both the Mediterranean Sea and the Etang de Thau, which act as a thermal regulator for the vineyards. In fact, it is said of Picpoul that, “Son terroir, c’est la mer (Its terroir is the sea).”