Producer Profile: Henri Milan’s viticultural philosophy carries with it a sense of lightness, that is, the entire complexity of making great wine – at its core – has the capability of being actually quite simple. In his own words, “Making wine is not a technique, it is an accompaniment,” he says, “to what the vine gives us…not a question of purity, it is a question of balance: you receive from the vine, and all plants in general, what you give it.” You can sense that lightness and harmony in his words – that making wine is not an ‘auteurs’ excursion but rather an ‘accompaniment,’ and that word, with its musical connotations, works to describe the wines of Domaine Milan particularly well. Founded in the 1950s by Henri’s father, Robert Milan, the estate is located along the small but famous (for its cameo as THE mountains in Vincent Van Gogh’s “Starry Night”!) chain of mountains in Provençe known as the Alpilles, in the picturesque holiday town of St. Remy de Provence. The first grapevines were planted in 1958, the year after their estate’s purchase on the advice of Robert’s stepfather, René Tramier. The estate was converted to organic principles when Robert’s son – Henri – took over the main grape-growing work in the late ‘80s, making them trailblazers for moving toward ‘natural’ wine in Provençe, a region whose production’s reputation has been dominated for some time by the ocean of salmon-hued, insipid & industrial rosé. Now accompanied by a small team including his son Théophile and his daughter Emmanuelle, Henri Milan – in accompaniment with the vines first planted both in the ‘50s and the youngest, a decade ago – produces some of the most downright delicious Provençal wines in existence. We are so happy and proud to present to you this special non-vintage red, a snapshot of two different years-worth of growth, in perfect harmony.
Vinification: From organic vineyard sites in Chateaurenard originally intended for the co-op, the Reynard Rebels was created by Cyril Zang's son at Domaine Henri Milan. This is a blending of two different vintages - 2017's Merlot and Carignan, and the 2018 Carignan. Both undergo a 5-day whole-cluster fermentation, followed by aging in concrete vat for 1 year. Unfined, unfiltered with a dash of SO2 at bottling.
Tasting Notes: While the nose is mineral and somewhat spicy, this is a fresh, crunchy red with a delicate smattering of tannin and an irresistible, fruit-forward palate. Strawberry and juicy red cherries, a soft mouthfeel and wonderful acidity. A perfect pairing for lamb, spaghetti and meatballs or a simple slice. (Shoutout @theperfectpairdotcom on IG!!!)