Limoux is a small French appellation in the eastern Pyrenées of France, buried deep in the Languedoc-Roussillon region near Carcassonne. History tells us that Blanquette de Limoux, the world's first sparkling wine, dates as far back as 1531, some 137 years before Dom Pérignon took credit for the discovery! At the time, the monks of the Benedictine abbey of Saint-Hilaire, near Limoux, were producing an unusual white wine in their cellars. Inside its glass flask, with a cork top, very rare for wines at this time, it acquired a natural sparkle.
Over time, bubbly from Limoux came to be called, ‘Blanquette de Limoux’ (Blanquette means ‘white’ in the Occitan language). This isn’t a cheap ‘Champagne look-alike’. It has a personality of its own. By the 19th century, Blanquette was enjoying worldwide popularity, from the White House in Washington to the palace of the Czars in St Petersburg. Two exclusively white grape varieties, Mauzac and Chardonnay, form the basis of the blend for ‘Blanquette de Limoux’. Mauzac, the traditional variety, gives body and aroma. Chardonnay, its irreplaceable partner, reinforces the bouquet, the freshness and the finesse. The result is a dry, creamy-textured, full-bodied wine with a fine yeasty character present in the aroma. Subtly fruity, with toasty green apple and lemon flavors Blanquette de Limoux tastes very clean yet with a long full finish.
Bernard Delmas is the star of Blanquette de Limoux wine making. His wines are highly prized in Europe due to their unbelievable refinement and value! Bernard Delmas treats his Mauzac especially well, experimenting with skin contact and ageing the wine on the lees longer than the minimum 9 months to enhance flavors. Adding to the ‘Delmas Legend’ is the fact that his wines are purely organic. Referring to its claim to be one of the very limited number of organically produced sparkling wines, its labeling also informs consumers that it is ‘FOE Organic’ and ‘vegetarian’ and was produced from organically grown grapes cultivated without chemical fertilizers, weed killers, or pesticides.