2007 Leon Barral Faugeres
What the hell is a soulful wine?
What does it mean when a wine has soul?
i complain a lot about tasting notes. those wholly inessential bits of wine ephemera that i believe have polluted the state of wine discourse, and then i turn around and describe a wine as “soulful,” which may well be meaningless in terms of descriptive.
i still believe it’s a valid term, however. Some wines have it. That soul. That indefinable funk.
The wines of Paolo Bea have been described as having it. Same with Arianna Occhipinti’s Sicilians. Same with the wines of Didier Barral at Domaine Leon Barral.
These are wines i keep returning to like clockwork. Something goes off that tells me i’m not getting enough Faugeres in my diet, like a craving for salt after a run. They’re magnetic wines, wines that make you wan’t to drink not taste. It’s the sort of thing that happens with George Clinton. your head just starts moving when you hear it. You can’t stop, and why would you want to?
The thing is not all wines have that electric shock, not all wines give you that feeling. That sort of stop you in your tracks and ground you to the floor for a few seconds when the wine hits you. Even good wines, wines i enjoy, wines i’d drink everyday don’t have it. When you drink some wines that wine comes into focus. When you drink wines with soul it seems other things come into focus as well. there’s a straight line between you, the wine, and well, something else. When you drink Leon Barral Faugeres makes sense, grenache makes sense, the food on your plate makes sense, it all seems to come together.
So what does “soul” mean?
i still have no idea but this wine has it.
Now try not to nod your head.