France: Languedoc Roussillon

North and West of Perpignan

Côtes du Roussillon Villages, Rivesaltes and Maury
By Richard James

This Guide was last updated on 22 April 2010
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Domaine Singla

Address: 7 Rue Pasteur, 66600 Rivesaltes
Tel: 04 68 28 30 68  Fax: 04 68 28 30 68
Geo-coordinates:  Latitude: 42:45:58N (42.76614)    Longitude: 2:52:15E (2.87075) 

Young, exuberant Laurent de Besombes makes an exciting range of Catalan-titled reds from a variety of vineyard sites in the areas of Rivesaltes, Opouls and Salses-le-Château, snuggling against the Corbières hills (45ha in total). However, only selected parcels and bunches are the source of his Singla label, launched in 2001; his fairly substantial holdings of Muscat and other white varieties are used to make Rivesaltes VDN styles. A few of his Singla reds are pitched under €10; he comments: “I want to stay reasonably priced despite all the work involved,” (he farms organically too). “It’s difficult to try and make a name for yourself straight away with very expensive wines.” Having said that, he’s recently launched an age-worthy top red called ‘Arrels’ (meaning roots in Catalan, from Grenache and Syrah) at a bold €50, which perhaps reflects the increasing buzz around his name. The range is a mix of Côtes du Roussillon and Vin de Pays: “If the taste matches AC regulations, then fine; if not, I don’t care,” he explained! Favourites, all named after the plots they come from, include ‘La Pinède’ (Grenache, Syrah and Carignan), ‘Passetemps’ (Grenache), ‘Castell Vell’ (Syrah), ‘La Crinyane’ (Carignan) and a new 100% ‘Mataro’ (Mourvèdre).

Useful information: Mobile phone is 06 11 77 07 11, to make an appointment.


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