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The magnificent Bandol appellation, known for its powerful reds and structured, elegant rosés, borders the Mediterranean Sea. Half a mile inland on a hillside near a tiny village called Le Castellet, Domaine de la Tour du Bon is quietly making some of the best wines that the appellation has to offer. The terroir here is a clay-limestone mix with a red subsoil. The 12 hectares of vines form a natural amphitheater overlooking the sea, and with abundant sunshine and very little rain, this is the hottest area in the appellation.
Agnès Henry is the current winemaker and owner of Domaine de la Tour du Bon. Her parents bought the estate in 1968 and spent the next two years digging into the rocky earth and planting the vines that she now tends full-time. In her 25 years of making wine, she has come to embrace organic agriculture and a hands-off approach in the cellar. In addition to farming organically, she has for the last few years worked with a dyanmizer to prepare biodynamic treatments. Fermentations take place in open top cement vats and normally last about three weeks; she pumps over occasionally to get oxygen to the yeasts. Following Bandol’s requirements, the reds are aged in wood (a mix of foudres and barrels) for a minimum of eighteen months. The wines are not fined or filtered. Domaine de la Tour du Bon wines are traditional and unmanipulated, offering a true expression of Bandol’s unique terroir.
Visit the site at www.tourdubon.com