Wines by Region / Southwest / Madiran / Domaine Capmartin
Domaine Capmartin - Madiran
In a way, this is a new domaine for us. But actually, at the same time it is one of our oldest domaines. Confusing, we know, but the story went that (being that I began my importing career as a Southwest specialist) the first container we ever brought in contained Domaine Capmartin Madiran. Unfortunately, the early 2000's saw the ugly brett monster rear its vile head within the winery and breathe its repulsive breath into their barrels. Fast-forward a dozen years: Simon Capmartin, who we first met when he was about 7, was poised to take over the domaine. The vines were now grown organically. The brett problem was, thankfully, a thing of the past. And we were back on track with Domaine Capmartin--this is a very good thing.
The domaine is housed in the former Convent of Maumusson-Laguian, surrounded by vineyards of old vine Tannat and with an imposing view of the Pyrenees.
These vines have been worked for centuries, but the history of Domaine Capmartin itself only opens in 1985, when Guy Capmartin decided to break off from the family estate and create his own domaine. Around 20 years later, in 2007, he became convinced that organic agriculture was the only way to go and converted Capmartin to organic and biodynamic farming. In 2013 after five years of dedicated and passionate learning, he was able to become certified, and the domaine has never looked back. When his son Simon took over soon after that, he showed the same unwavering commitment to organic and biodynamic work in the vineyards, and has continued in his father's footsteps while bringing a fresh young perspective into the domaine.
The vineyards are planted with Gros Manseng and Petit Courbu on the white side (under the uniquely named appellation of Pacherenc du Vic Bilh Sec), and mostly Tannat with some Cabernet Sauvignon on the red (Madiran AOP and IGP Côtes de Gascogne) side. Soils are clay-based with plenty of large stones, ideal for drainage and ripening. Being certified organic, the domaine never uses synthetic chemicals, but instead works with copper, sulfur and clay in moderate doses, to which they add an organic plant mixture (hortie, horsetail, comfrey), to stimulate the natural defenses of the plant.Grass is grown in between the vine to stimulate competition.
In the winery, only 70-hectoliter concrete vats are used, and the fact that they are open-top allows the pigeages to be extracted instead of the traditional pumping over or out, giving the wines a deep fruitiness and round, silky tannins--neither of which are common in wines from Tannat. Wines are raised in used 500-liter barrels, allowing a better balance between wood and wine, so as not to mask the unique characteristics of these grapes and their terroir.
What a pleasure to be working with Domaine Capmartin again, and watching Simon help the wines reach their full potential.
Domaine Capmartin Madiran "L'Instant"
This blend of 50% Tannat and 50% Cabernet Sauvignon is precise and pleasurable, a Madiran that you can serve by the glass given its oddly approachable character. The wine shows amazing value, but also the Madiran terroir without bacteriological interference.
Domaine Capmartin Madiran "Vieilles Vignes"
A blend of 80% Tannat and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, both from 60-year old vines, this wine is certified organic. The grapes are 100% hand-harvesetd, and then ferment in 70-hectoliter open-top cement tanks, where they undergo daily pigeage. The wine is then aged for 12 months in large foudres, and then for 6 months in stainless steel before being lightly filtered and bottled. Purplish-black color, very typical Madiran nose of blackberry, blackcurrant and a smoky floral note. On the palate it is well balanced and focused, but with dense, velvety fruit.
Domaine Capmartin Pacherenc du Vic Bilh Sec "A et E"
[wine info coming soon]
Domaine Capmartin Tannat "Sans Soufre"
[wine info coming soon]
Domaine Capmartin IGP Côtes de Gascogne "Syrah de Simon"
100% organically grown Syrah which is all hand harvested. It undergoes a pre-fermentation maceration and then a long fermentation in open-top cement tanks, where it undergoes daily pigeage. It is then aged for 16 months in stainless steel tanks. A deep purple color, this wine is a surprise coming from the IGP Côtes de Gascogne. Rich and lush, with purple fruits, dried flowers and a spicy note that are left unmasked by its stainless steel aging.