Cheverny Rouge 2018 — Pinot Noir & Gamay
A Wine That
is so lively it feels like there's a gymnastics class going on in your mouth. Full of scents of vibrant red fruit: think cherries and strawberries, there's also a serious side here. It might be Hervé's entry-level cuvée but there's a lot going on - you'll notice thyme and liquorice notes join the fruit after you give the wine a moment in your mouth. The perfect red for spring and summer nights outside by the BBQ.
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- Winemaker: Hervé Villemade
Where and How?
From Pinot Noir and Gamay vineyards in the Cheverny appellation of the Loire, this is Hervé's négoce wine, meaning he sources the fruit from organic farmers. The wine was naturally fermented and macerated for fifteen days, and aged in old oak barrels. This is hands-off winemaking, as natural and simple as possible, to allow the grape to shine - as Aaron Ayscough writes in the winemaker profile of Hervé:
"His Sauvignon and Cheverny rouge are known as craftsmanlike, unshowy references for their grape varieties."
Hervé Villemade adopted organic farming and natural winemaking practices in the 90s, for his 22 hectares of vines in the Cheverny appellation of the Loire. His vineyards are planted to Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Menu Pineau, Romorantin, Côt, Pinot Noir, Gamay and Chenin Blanc. Soils here divide roughly between sandy-flint and clayey-flint. Vines are spaced relatively wide at two metres, and even wider for the older vines that comprise the historical heart of the estate.
His chief concern, as he’s expanded over the years, has been minimizing frost risk. It was frost losses that impelled him, in 2002, to partner with sommelier-turned-winemaker Olivier Lemasson to found Les Vins Contés, a négoçiant business that Lemasson continued after the pair parted ways in 2006. Villemade founded his own négoçiant company in 2008, which he continues to this day. Not all purchases have organic certification, although he emphasises that all grapes are farmed organically.