La Vrille et le Papillon Celle d'en Face 2015

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Valvignères, Ardèche, France
Fermented with native yeasts, unfiltered & unfined, no additional sulphites

Méryl and Géraldine Crozier established themselves in the village of Valvignères in 2012 after Méryl had cut his teeth making wine in Madiran in the South West and Mâcon in Burgundy. On returning to the family vineyards and eventually taking the reins, on the advice of Gérald Oustric (of Le Mazel, whom we also work with), the Croziers stopped supplying grapes to the local co-op, obtained organic certification, and their 5 hectares of Syrah, Grenache, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Ugni Blanc & Viognier became La Vrille et le Papillon. The Merlot vineyard for their ‘Celle d’en Face’ cuvée good-naturedly references the fact the vines sit directly opposite the co-operative cellars from which they withdrew their fruit. The vines all sit over calcareous limestone and clay soils and enjoy the moderating effect of the mistral wind as it funnels through the valley. In the cellar fermentations occur naturally and nothing is added. The wines are fruit-driven, herbaceous and possess spry aromatic qualities; everything we hope for in wine from this region.

Celle d'en Face is 100% Merlot made using grapes that follow what's known as a green harvest in June. This early picking focusses the vine's energy on the few selected bunches that are left during the ripening season, resulting in great concentration in the fruit when it is eventually harvested three months later. The majority of the wine is matured in tank, with a small portion in old barrels, which keeps the supple red fruit to the fore but adds depth. Because of the focus on quality over quantity, only 4000 bottles of this wine were made.