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Wine & Spirits | WINE OF THE WEEK

2003 Domaine Berthoumieu Madiran `Cuvee Charles de Batz'

October 04, 2006|S. Irene Virbila

Madiran lies on the southern border of the Armagnac region of southwest France -- "Three Musketeers" country -- and is famous for its powerful reds based on the tannic Tannat grape. Fans of Alexandre Dumas and his merry band will recall that Charles de Batz is the given name of Mousquetaire d'Artagnan. Domaine Berthoumieu Madiran "Cuvee Charles de Batz" is Tannat blended with 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. So deeply colored it will stain your teeth purple, this is an irresistible wine with all the force of character you'd expect from a top Madiran and this wild and beautiful region. It's also beautiful winemaking from Didier Barre.

Madiran shows its best with rich, fatty foods -- charcuterie, pates, grilled duck breast, braised duck legs, pork ribs and chops.

*

Quick swirl

Region: Southwest France

Price: About $18

Style: Rich and forceful

Food it goes with: Charcuterie, duck, goose, pork.

Where you find it: Mission Wines in South Pasadena, (626) 403-9463; Silverlake Wine in Los Angeles, (323) 662-9024; Woodland Hills Wine Co. in Woodland Hills, (818) 222-1111.

--S. Irene Virbila

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