Domaine Castell-Reynoard, Bandol 2014 ‘Coeur de Vigne’

Off-piste: 91/100

Bandol takes its name from the port where wine from the surrounding vineyards has been shipped for 200 years.

The best of Mourvèdre

It’s the only French appellation where Mourvèdre is the principal variety. Mourvèdre likes to see the sea. It enjoys the sea breezes and demands hot Provencal sunshine. So it is in Bandol where the grape shows its true quality and potential, unmatched anywhere else.

All by hand

Domaine Castell-Reynoard is relatively new entrant into the top wines of Bandol. This greatness is owed much to the passion of Julien Catsell who took over the property in 2009.

Domaine Castell-Reynoard is situated within the commune of La Cadière D’Azur. Mechanical harvesting is impractical due to the style of terracing used on the hillsides and is prohibited by the appellation rules.

Julien Castell is moving the domaine towards a biodynamic future. The vines have been certified as organic since 2014 and biodynamic from the 2017 vintage. There are 8 hectares of vines, ranging from 4 to 60 years old, with a further 7 hectares due to come into production.

Julien has worked endlessly to reconnect the estate to its ecosystem by carving new terraces out of the calcareous soil and recreating the Provencal symbiosis. The hills around the vineyard are located in a geographical oddity, containing Triassic limestone, very different to the granite and other soils in the region. This and the altitude to 300 metres explain Domaine Castell-Reynoard combine great elegance and aromatic intensity.

To the wine

Initially, the coup de Coeur is vibrant with stone-fruit, blackberry, and violet aromas, but

subsequently develops sophisticated secondary aromas of tobacco, leather, pine, and dried


Final verdict

Climate: Mediterranean

Flavours: Nutty

Structure: Powerful

Style: Graceful

Closure: Cork

Approach: Organic