Julien Courtois "Ancestral"


Julien Courtois "Ancestral"
Varietals: Côt, Gamay & Gascon
Region: Loire, France
Year: 2012
Price: ~$30
Retailer: Lou Wine Shop

It's interesting when your hobby becomes your job. It is so fun and exciting and gratifying, and it is challenging and exhausting, just like you always knew it would be. And then there is this part where you find yourself uninspired and frustrated, because that thing you used to do to relax and be creative is now your job.

But you have to get back to that thing; that thing that made you laugh when no one was around, that thing that took weight off your shoulders no one else could, that thing you couldn't stop doing if you tried, that thing you did for no one but yourself, that thing that gave you purpose before you knew you had a purpose.

And here we are. I couldn't be more predictable if I tried with a Gamay blend. It's like I've lit a bunch of fancy-ass candles, put on Getz/Gilberto and am leading myself to bed to try to rekindle a dwindling romance...


Julien Courtois' "Ancestral" has me feeling more than satisfied, entirely in love all over again, and convinced that my relationship with wine will last forever.

It's got a mouth on it; acerbic and a little dirty. There's definitely a bite to it, but it is very smooth. Its acidity walks a tight rope of savory tension that leaves you wanting more. This is not a shallow Gamay that you drink before dinner and never think about again. This has a smokey delicious depth to it I want to swim in forever. 

Tasting Notes: Cranberry and black cherry on the nose, with some hints of melted Red Vines. On the palate, there's very tart cranberry and red currant, resting upon a bed of savory smoke. There is this umami-ness to it too, and the mouthfeel is very "freshly laundered white t-shirt." Nicely balanced considering the high acidity. 

Ross Test: Delicious!