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Living the Dream

Earlier this year I was on a buying trip to Languedoc in France. On this occasion I took my wife Janet because we were flying into Montpellier where I studied Oenology, and I wanted to revisit the old haunts with her, to bring some of my old stories to life. One of our destinations was Saint Chinian to meet an Englishman by the name of Tom Hills.  Tom is an entrepreneurial young man who is living the dream. He has bought twenty-two hectares of vineyard of which fifteen is sold to the local cooperative and seven he keeps for himself. With these seven he has created Domaine La Lauzeta, which produces Domaine La Lauzeta`Jauzimen` 2016, quite possibly the best Rosé in all of Languedoc. He is now also producing some very good red wines which are showing promise. Janet and I caught up with Tom at his new winery which he is still in the process of building. After a fabulous lunch in the beautiful village of Roquebrun we did a tour of his vineyards, small plots scattered in the valleys all around Saint Chinian.  At one point we came across an old ruin which Tom said he planned to be his home someday.  He spoke of increasing his vineyard holdings too – a new plot of this and that – Vermentino grapes, possibly? A man with lots of ideas, living the dream. That evening we joined up with his winemaker and picking team for a wine-tasting supper. The Cinsault grapes had already been picked and pressed for the 2018 Rosé, and the juice was looking good. The red wine grapes would take a little longer to ripen, therefore our arrival fell in the mid-way break. This provided the perfect opportunity for a party, and everyone was in fine spirits. We were around fifteen, with most of the team staying under the one roof hired by Tom, living and working together as a community for the period of the harvest. Oh what joy – and for lucky me, yet another story behind a label.




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