Wine Wednesday: Julie Benau's 2015 Picpoul, Libero, Aged Underwater
As you may know, since the very beginning the girl & the fig has boasted an exclusively “Rhône-alone” wine list. We’ve always loved that featuring unique Rhône wines gives us an opportunity to begin a conversation with our guests, perhaps introduce them to something new, as well as to present talented and innovative producers we believe in.
This week: Julie Benau's 2015 Picpoul, Libero, Aged Underwater About the wine maker: Julie Benau The Benau Domaine centers around a 16th Century fortified farm which was purchased by the Benau family in the 1980s. In 1999, daughter Julie returned to the Domaine and the family bottled their own production for the first time. Fast forward to 2012, Julie's first experimentation with underwater aging was released. Benau's aged-underwater Picpoul differs from its peers in that it is aged in the sea in barrel, rather than bottle. Cool temperatures, high pressure, and gentle rocking of the lees account, in part, for the wines mild salinity, deep minerality, and complex aromas. Tasting Notes: Somewhere between a lees-aged Muscadet and a denser Rhône white, but with a bit of seaweed and petrol (in a good way) mixed in. “As a result of this intensive aging, the wine is richer and the aromas more complex.” Its salinity, its wild mineral depth—that feels true to a sense of place.
Source: A New Extreme for Underwater Wine Aging by Zachar Sussman Pairings: At the girl & the fig we’d recommend pairing the Julie Benau's 2015 Picpoul with pastis-scented steamed mussels & frites (garlic, leeks, herbs, grilled bread), smoked trout salad (watercress, frisee, cucumber, lemon, horseradish, potato chips) or soft cheeses. At home enjoy with oysters, grilled shrimp or escargot in garlic butter. Cheers! (Thirsty? Book your next reservation at the girl & the fig!)