I first came across Domaine Viret at a restaurant. The sommelier was particularly proud of his find – an honest, inexpensive wine that employed very simple, organic horticulture to bring out the true, naivete of the grape. Okay, so this might have been over-egging the pudding a bit but what he said next was very intriguing: the wine has no sulfites and, consequently, zero hangover!
Now, I have since done some research, which suggests that a sulfite-free wine is a ruse. But it is possible to produce a wine with very low sulfites. The zero hangover claim is not without merit, however, as I did enjoy copious amounts of Domaine Viret at one sitting without any unpleasant side-effects the following morning.
I have since tried three more Domaine Viret wines: the Emergence, Trilogie Cuvee G and Trilogie Cuvet T. Here is a link to the Viret Website, where you can read about these wines and about their production process.
I must admit, their description of cosmoculture sounds a bit hocus pocus. I’m not entirely sure how crystals and “beacons of cosmic energy” are really going to improve the wine-making process. But, at least, the winemakers at Viret are convinced of their methodology. Thankfully, I can say that it does produce excellent wine.
My favourite of the bunch is the Emergence. Sold for roughly £16 here in the UK, it is a wonderfully refreshing, vibrant Syrah with plenty of flavour and punch. You must let the Viret wines breath for a long time (they recommend over an hour for the Trilogie). The Emergence starts off with a bit of effervescence, which you might find off-putting in a red. But leave it for half and hour and it drinks extremely well. Very exciting.
I was a bit less enamoured by the Trilogie. They are twice the price but not necessarily twice as exciting. But, that’s just my taste. I did enjoy the Trilogie Cuvee T more than the G. It was bold and rich. You can decide for yourself, however.
Be forewarned, though, that these wines do have a great deal of sediment in the bottom. I would advise filtering them while using an wine aerator (such as the Vinturi) to accelerate the breathing process.
Where to Buy:
GoodWineOnline is an excellent UK vendor that has decent prices and good service