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Laurent Cazottes

Gaillac, France

Most famous for his ridiculously delicious range of eau de vie, Laurent also makes some honest and deeply satisfying cuvees from varieties local to where he is based in the village of Villeneuve-sur-vère in Gaillac, in the south west of France.

As well as 20+ yo vines of mauzac, mauzac rose, duras, syrah, jurançon noir, prunelart (a parent of cot/malbec) and braucol, Laurent has a range of fruits, nuts, flowers, vegetables and berries, all farmed under biodynamic certification on his 20 hectare property.

Now considered to be one of the best distillers in France, Laurent took over in the late 90’s from his father who used to work as a roving distiller. His father would work with the fruit provided to him at each place he visited whereas Laurent decided to use home grown fruit for his eau de vie and liqueur, though he continues to use his fathers’ still.

He approaches both his eau de vie and wine production with the same consideration and deft touch, working with detailed, delicate macerations and techniques for distillation that give lifted aromatics and incredibly pure expressions of fruit. Another part of Laurents process that sets him apart is the removal of skin, seeds and stems from the fruit prior to distillation/maceration.

All wines are hand harvested and undergo spontaneous fermentation with indigenous yeasts and each cuvee is treated individually with ageing possible in stainless steel, fibreglass or even Spanish amophorae. Minimal amounts of sulphur are added if necessary, but never above 20mg/L.

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