Mandiran, SW France
Great wine that is positively good for you
Sylvain Dabadie took over the estate from his father (who in turn had taken over from his own father) in 2014, assuring the continuity of a multi-generation family estate. Sitting on the border of the two Pyrénées mountain ranges – the Hautes-Pyrénées et Pyrénées Atlantiques – Laougué’s vineyards, some of them over 100 years old, are fully worked by hand with true respect for the plants and the landscape. The desire to be as truthful and respectful of the terroir as possible is the reason why Sylvain only makes single varietal, single plot wines.
How we found them/How Richard found them: I read about Laougué’s wine in “The Wine Diet” and was intrigued to try them. I was immediately blown away by their modern version of the traditionally rustic and unexciting Madiran.
Sylvain’s father, Pierre, was part of the movement of winemakers who innovated farming methods and brought modern winemaking techniques to the region in order to revitalise and ennoble the Madiran appellation. Sylvain combines his father’s technical awareness with a renewed concern for biodiversity, environmental sustainability and resource preservation. The estate is therefore transitioning into organic farming.
His “Grand-Cru” approach (i.e. all wines are single varietals made solely with the fruit from a single plot) and his uncompromisingly careful work in the vineyard (all grapes and hand-harvested and hand selected) are the basis of wines that have deep expressiveness and are firmly rooted in the tradition of their appellations: Madiran AOC for the reds made from Tannat, Cabernet Sauvignon and/or Cabernet Franc; Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh for the dry and sweet whites for which Petit Manseng, Gros Manseng and Petit Courbu provide the base material.
Location: Gers, Mandiran, SW France
Working with us since: 2019
Viticultural standards: vineyards managed under lutte raisonnée (application of treatments and fertilisers only under struct need)
Our pick of the best wine from this producer: Arbison – the tannat grape like you’ve never tasted it!
Interesting fact: Laougé were featured in the famous book ‘The Wine Diet’ by Roger Corderer for having wines with the top level of procyanidins, a class of flavonoids known to contribute to good heart function.