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Bright, cheerful, and energetic, the 2002 Château Clément Termes embodies the essence of Blanc Perlé. The wine's pale straw color captures a glimpse of the enchanted Gaillac landscape and prepares the nose for the dancing, fresh citrus and melon scents that leap from the glass. On the palate, the Château Clément Termes is sprightly and refreshing, revealing both fresh fig and marmalade like flavors as well as a great quaff ability. In other words, this wine goes down easily and quickly. Fortunately, its moderate alcohol content and intrinsic purity make it easy on the head. We suggest serving Château Clément Termes well chilled (about 40º F), like a dry white Bordeaux or Sauvignon Blanc.
Bring on the party or the picnic, or perhaps even the last vestiges of summer that seem to linger as sequestered sequels to warm carefree days, and you have a perfect foil to the 2002 Château Clément Termes Blanc Perlé. Other fine accompaniments include expertly prepared Sashimi and Sushi, Stuffed Shitake Mushroom Caps, and Tequila Shrimp, a dish made with cooked shrimp, freshly squeezed lime juice, cilantro and tequila. Yum! Sautéed oysters or scallops, fried clams, and marinated mussels provide other memorable complements to the 2002 Château Clément Termes Blanc Perlé. Enjoy!
Château Clément Termes was founded in 1860 by Jean-Pierre Termes when he planted his wine estate above the lovely town of Lisle-sur-Tarn on the right bank of the picturesque Tarn River. More than a century later, the descendents of Jean-Pierre Termes still cultivate this Gaillac estate's choice vineyards. In the past, Château Clément Termes shipped vin de messe or sacramental wine to the clergy throughout France, testimony to the purity and quality of the estate's wines. Gaillac lies to the southeast of Bordeaux on what may be France's most beautiful river the Tarn. Not so long ago, the wines of Gaillac were often sold as Bordeaux since Gaillac lies at the highest navigable point of the Tarn, making transportation down river by way of the Garonne to the city of Bordeaux a relatively easy affair. What may seem to us today as chicanery was in fact an acceptable practice in bygone days. Such was the case for Gaillac and other high quality wines from the hinterlands, like Cahors, which built great reputations for longevity as well as traveling well. Moreover, during the Middle Ages, Gaillac wines were highly sort after in their own right. They became one of the favorite wines of Richard the Lion Hearted and other Plantagenet kings of England. Today, Gaillac is made in several distinct styles, one of which is Blanc Perlé a specialty of the region. Blanc Perlé is made by keeping choice lots of the region's indigenous white grapes, espcially Mauzac, Len de l'El, and Muscadelle (a grape that produces dry white wine and bears no resemblance to Muscatel) on their lees for an extended period, before bottling the resulting wine under a slight pressure. This preserves some of the wine's natural carbon dioxide, which remains in the bottle.
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