Luc Charlier, la Gueuze, le cidre et le "vrai vin"

La dernière chronique de Jim Budd sur le site "Les 5 du Vin" (c'est ici) fait réagir notre ancien collègue d'IVV  Luc Charlier, aujourd'hui vigneron dans le Roussillon (et oui, il n'y a pas que Bizeul à avoir succombé aux charmes de cette belle région et à ses vins). Voici ce qu'il nous écrit:



Luc Charlier

Chers amis...

Je crois qu’il est temps que tous ceux – comme vous – qui militent pour des BONS vins (légèrement oxydatifs ou non, boisés ou non, avec un poil de « jolie » volatile ou non, faibles en degré ou forts en alcool, variétaux ou bien d’assemblage...) s’élèvent contre les réelles déviations aromatiques.

Bien entendu, si une certaine clientèle aime cela et que cela permet à certains collègues de se faire un peu de trésorerie, je n’y vois pas d’inconvénient. Mais au moins qu’on ne donne pas à cela le nom de «vin d’appellation». On fait de l’excellent cidre en Normandie et dans l’Exmoor, la Gueuze est la spécialité de ma vallée de la Senne natale : laissez vivre les Celtes et leurs boissons ! Pas de concurrence déloyale !

Dear Jim,

I used to be a nephrologist - you know the guy who treats kidney patients with machines that look like those in a laundrette and use reverse osmosis to clean the water they consume– and an infectious diseases specialist, in a previous and unhappy life. I have now (54 years of age) turned a grape-grower cum winemaker in the Agly Valley (French Roussillon). As such, I think the issue of “real” wine needs ... clarification (humor!).

I will only challenge the last sentence of your contribution : it is an offence and a dishonesty to flog faulty wines at an extortionate price. But, then again, I’m an ex-trotskyist by inclination. For the rest, how right you are!

I have known the Pellé family for ages, dating back to a time when I ran a little “groupage” club up there in Belgium with a few friends, “Les Amis du Vins”. They made wonderful Menetou-Salon’s – the whites, that is. I did not know they had gone biodynamic in the meantime. And we could make a list of at least 100 wine estates which claim “biodynamic farming” and make wonderful wines (Zind-Humbrecht, Ostertag, Gauby, Mark Angeli, Clemens Busch, Joguet are the first to come to my mind). We could increase this list to 1.000 for those going “organic only” (the French say “bio”): Domaine Gardiés is probably the first I would think of. And then you have a few chappies coming up with “sulphur-free” wines that are outstanding: I think of the Barrail family (Faugères) and the dazzling Thierry Allemand (Cornas). So, clearly, all these approaches do not necessarily lead to poor wines.

The problem lies elsewhere: some winemakers without any technical, scientific or agricultural - let alone “countryside” - back-ground claim those esoteric methods as either a kind of psychotherapy for their own personality problems or as a marketing tool, wanting their wines to achieve “niche-status”, whereas they would otherwise just be junk.

I know I will not earn myself many friends with this small note – but I have written worse in my life . On the one hand, some wines are smashing, while being made along the biodynamic, organic or “natural” pathways. The only difference then is that they will have taken the purity of our planet or the integrity of our immune system into account – certainly a feature of which I approve. On the other hand, many many wines originating from those methods are just too poor to be drunk, and their label don’t do anything to the point. Cider is no wine, and Brettanomyces bruxellensis is excellent for brewing “Gueuze”-beer, not for making “vin fin”. Full stop.

Luc Charlier

08:39 Écrit par In Vino Veritas dans Actualité | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) |  Facebook |

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