Franck does as little as possible to his vines and for his top wine, the Caubeigt, he picks the small raisin-like grapes in early November (without any rot!). Don’t get me wrong, this is a sweet wine, but because of its balance and freshness, the Caubeigt doesn’t pen you in because it is sweet. It's definitely the sort of wine to enjoy as an aperitif too, as team Swig did soon after it arrived at the end of a long day! It's so lush - think some aromatics of Viognier, but with a nod to the sweet wines of Sauternes on first opening. Pineapple, acacia, sweet hay and apricot, with the most beautiful mouthfeel and amazing length.
Now, this wine is special for a few reasons. Jurancon has always been capable of producing sensational and distinct wines but for one reason or another they have not really reached that level. However, this winemaker nestled in the foothills of the Pyrenees has since taken Jurancon to the next level. We saw the winemaker Franck at Wine Paris last week. Regardless of being admittedly ‘tired’ from the night before, Franck lit up our day with his down to earth, enthusiastic and welcoming attitude to wine, life and others. His personality is echoed in the Castera wines. Exceptional quality with humility. 4th generation winemaker Franck has made wines for over 10 years around the world, where he picked up many ideas to improve the quality of wine back home. He gingerly introduced them to his father, and now has taken over the key decisions in the vineyards and winery.