Reasoning behind this wine : Chardonnay in France is commonly associated with chalk, limestone and clay-type soils. However, here is an interesting combination of Chardonnay on very stony granite soil, with the bedrock close to the surface. This wine translates the character of the soil into a fresh mineral wine with finesse.
Tasting notes: Aromatics: classic chardonnay fruit showing no oak. Mouth: fresh, mineral, concentrated. Touch of oak at the end. Good aperitif or with light dishes, mainly fish orientated.
Recently blind-tasted against a Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes at 3 times the price. Our Chardonnay came up trumps! We're not boasting, but thought you might be interested to know. We certainly were!
How the wine is made: without adding sugar (no chaptalisation), as is the case with all our wines. The grapes are hand-picked directly into small 20-kilo bins as used in Burgundy. In hot weather, the grapes are put into cold storage so when they are pressed, the fruit will be preserved. If necessary, the bunches are individualy sorted by hand to eliminate damaged grapes. The grapes are tipped by hand into the pneumatic wine press. The aim of this is to treat the grapes as gently as possible to avoid breaking skins that would release juice that would oxidize. Fruit is thus preserved and less sulfites are needed. The pressing is slow and gentle. The juice is left at a cool temperature to enable the heavier elements to deposit. No enzymes are used as we prefer to keep the lees for the barrel ageing. As the grapes are picked by hand, the quality of these lees is very good. The fermentation temperature is around 20°C. The alcohol fermentation will generally continue in barrels through to spring in our cellars on fine lies. Our barrels come exclusively from Meursault either new or second-hand from various growers. No sulfites are added during this period as the malolactic fermentation will occur during the summer. Aging our wines in barrels does not aim to give an oak style but to enrich it with regular batonnage and develop the aromatics. When the wine is bottled, in accordance with our policy of naturally made wine, we use no additives which are otherwise commonly used such as Arabic gum, metatartrique acid, ascorbic acid etc. We only use a minimum of sulfites.
Appellation: Vin de France.
Grape : Chardonnay, low yielding type.
Soil: the granite hill called St Sulpice is just a few hundred metres from the Loire river giving a special micro climate. This area is about 5 km from the main Côte Roannaise wine producing area with quite a different terroir. According to the earliest documents known, dating from the year 966, this is where vines were first grown in our region.
Origin of the grapes: Coteau de St Sulpice.
Yield : 35hl /ha.
Alcohol : 13 %, un-chaptalised.
Bottle : Bordeaux type in cases of 6x75cl. We use Nomacorc Classic.