This wine comes from a 80 year-old complanted plot of Cabernet Franc, Grolleau, Côt and multiple types of Gamay including some teinturiers (red flesh) grown on the clay and silex soil of Amboise. Hand-harvested mid-September, the grapes are sorted then directly pressed whole-cluster to preserve their aromatics. A short, cold-temperature alcoholic fermentation starts, then half-way through the wine is bottled, to gain the natural carbonation (Method Ancestrale). The wine rests for 6 to 8 months before being disgorged. 2019 is one of the best examples of the cuvées, with a great combination of ripeness and freshness.
Farming: Certified organic
La Grange Tiphaine was created at the end of the 19th century by Alfonse Delecheneau, followed by three generations: Adrien, Jackie and now, Damien. Damien studied oenology and viticulture in Bordeaux and worked at wineries in California and South Africa, and returned to the winery in 2002 to take over the operations there. He brings a level of scientific precision to natural winemaking that we haven’t seen in many others. The design of the winery and the steps he takes to ensure quality rival some of the most technically advanced wineries in the world, but this is all in the name of using as few additives as possible, to evoke their precious terroir in its purest sense.
As of 2008 Coralie, Damien’s wife, joined the family as a fully active partner in the life and work of their 15-hectare vineyard. Damien’s talent as a winemaker is evident from the multitude of beautifully balanced, elegant, precise red, white, rosé and sparkling wines that he crafts from five different varieties: Chenin blanc, Côt (Malbec), Gamay, Cabernet Franc, and even the ancient and rare Loire variety called, Grolleau. The wines are in the AOCs of Touraine Amboise and Montlouis sur Loire. The wines are all different; tender or round, fine or fruit filled, dry or sweet, but they all share the common thread of careful work in the vines that make for beautifully balanced, terroir driven, precise wines.
In 2016, Damien was honored to take the lead in Montlouis, becoming president of the appellation. He followed in one of his idol’s footsteps, François Chidaine, and has since led the charge to use helicopters to avert frost damage that has been rampant in the Loire Valley over the past several years. At least in 2017, they were very pleased to completely stop the frost damage and save all the grapes in the Montlouis appellation.
Grolleau is a red skinned grape variety that produces high yields of relatively thin, acidic wine. It has played a major role in Rose d'Anjou, in which it is commonly blended with Gamay.
Gamay is an ancient Burgundian red grape variety that is most well known for the wines of Beaujolais. There are over 30 different varieties of Gamay, many of them specifically cloned to select certain characteristics. The original variation is known as Gamay Noir a Jus Blanc - named for it's pale flesh. It is a natural offspring of Pinot and Gouais Blanc
Cot is the black grape variety of French origin from which Malbec originated. Appreciated for the good quality and dark black color of the wines it made, the grape traveled throughout the French countryside during the 18th century, and in the process was renamed numerous times. The moniker "Malbec," honored the man who cultivated it in the region of Bordeaux, one Monsieur Malbeck.
Cot grown in the Loire valley, specifically in Touraine has delicious, easy-drinking, chillable character. The perfect red for a Florida summer.
Region: Touraine (Loire Valley)
The "garden of France", Touraine's most famous wines are the still red wines from the individual appellations of Bourgueil, Chinon and St Nicolas de Bourgueil, and it's still and sparkling wines from Vouvray and Montlouis. The soil contains a local limestone unique to the area called Tuffeau. It is characterized as a chalky or sandy, fine-grained limestone, white to yellowish-cream in appearance, and micaceous (containing some white flakes of mica, or muscovite). Ancient Loire Valley formed the floor of a vast sea. Over the millennia, sediment from the sea floor, comprised fossilized living organisms and sand particles, became compressed to form what is now known as Tuffeau stone.
Weathered tuffeau, combined with sand, flint, and clay—as found in the Central Loire regions of Anjou, Saumur and Touraine is an excellent vineyard soil. Tuffeau is equally famous for being the building blocks of many of the gorgeous castles of the Loire, and may also be known as Turonian Limestone (after the city of Tours).
Tasting notes: Fun summer red fruits – strawberry and cherry with a delicious tang. A perfect refreshing off-dry drink.
Recommended pairings: Great for a celebration or poolside, creamy risotto or triple creme brie