The Languedoc takes its name from a time when its populace spoke Occitan. The “Langue d’oc” was the version of French spoken in this part of the country, and “Oc” was the word for “yes” while people in the north of France said “oeuil” which is the oui of today. There are still some paysans in the most remote parts of Languedoc that still speak a form of patois that resembles the language of their historic countrymen. Cinsault is one of Languedoc’s key grape varieties, and is known for its supple, juicy, and fruity wines. When made into a red, Cinsault yields wines that tend to be light ruby in color with notes of sour red berries, like strawberries, currants, and cranberries. Because of all its characteristics, Cinsault is particularly well suited for rosé.
Made under the guidance of Pierrick Harang, the Petit Balthazar wines are “the most successful wines with deliberately reduced alcohol that I have come across,” according to wine critic Jancis Robinson. It would be difficult to find a winemaker more passionate and enthusiastic about his products than Pierrick. From a long line of winemakers himself, Pierrick sources grapes from selected growers in the Languedoc and applies scientific techniques along with winemaking mastery to produce wines in his own individual style. The Balthazar wines are not dealcoholized but grapes are picked at the optimum time with enough sugar to produce a great 11% alcohol wine.