Limoux is a region within the Languedoc best known as the most likely birthplace of sparkling wine. Records dating back to 1531 show that local monks had developed the technique that closely resembles that of Prosecco. Today, Limoux wines are the second most imported French sparkling wine, after Champagne.
Limoux sparkling wines come in two styles. (This info comes directly from reps from the region):
- Blanquette de Limoux wines are at least 90% Mauzac, a grape that is native to the region and not grown elsewhere. These wines are fresh and show ripe green apple flavors.
- Crémant de Limoux wines are primarily blends of Chardonnay (a key Champagne grape) and Chenin Blanc, with some additions of Mauzac and/or Pinot Noir. These wines are most like their cousins to the north, with some subtle toasty, brioche notes.
We’ll review both styles below, courtesy of producer Antech (the name surely sounds better in French than in English), which was originated by Eugenie Limouzy, one of the first women in Languedoc to manage a vineyard. Let’s give these affordable wines a spin!
NV Antech Brut Nature Blanquette de Limoux – A non-vintage Blanquette. There’s lots of lemon on a fairly creamy body, chewy with overtones of grapefruit, sour apple, and a touch of mint. Imagine a juicier and slightly sour style of Prosecco and you’re about on target for this wine, which works well as an aperitif and as a base for punch, cocktails, and more. B+ / $13
2014 Antech Emotion Cremant de Limoux Brut Rose – A vintage cremant, and a rose at that. Creamy again, with fragrant florals and a lacing of strawberry jam. The finish has a slight edge to it, just a hint of bitterness to give the sweetness some balance and the wine some depth. Otherwise it drinks a lot like a crowd-pleasing rose Cremant d’Alsace, with a light caramel kiss on the finish. B+ / $15