Imported directly and exclusively by Wayward Wines. At last we finally have some of Noëlla's delicious Gamay! On a little bit more of a funky tip to her usual style, this wine is made in the whole-bunch, carbonic maceration style, and as such displays that crunchy, vegetal character with low tannins and a juicy, lip-smacking finish. Balance is achieved by transferring the pressed wine to old barrels for just over a year to slowly finish the fermentation in the ambient atmosphere of the cellar, which is carved out of the hillside tuffeau. This softens the edges somewhat, yielding a wine that is at once luscious, sappy and sating. A little reduced on opening, given time to see the air once the cork has been pulled, the dark forest fruits really begin to show themselves.
Since starting to make wine in 2001, Noëlla has trained with and worked alongside some of the great names of the Loire. A couple of years with Agnès and René Mosse in Anjou led to her becoming the vineyard manager at Les Bois Lucas after becoming friends with Junko Ara, then on to renting parcels of the feted Clos Roche Blanche estate in Touraine from Catherine Roussel and Didier Barrouillet. She now makes wine with fruit from a mixture of owned and rented parcels at her beautiful cellar carved out of the hillside in Thésée; a testament to her hard work and determination over the last 20 years. Noëlla chooses to work under the more general VDF denomination rather than AOC and her wines stand apart from the perceived notion of Touraine. “If it doesn’t smell like cat piss, you don’t get the appellation” she quips - but only half-jokingly. She refers to early picking and the prevalence of industrial yeasts used in the area to enhance supposedly typical flavours in the wine. Noella ferments with native yeasts and seeks a longer maturation period in old barrels than is usual, meaning her wines are released much later than many other producers nearby. This patience is rewarded with sublime depth and texture in the wine; her unique and varied expressions of Sauvignon Blanc range from the zippy to the tropical and often confound expectations of the grape. Her red wines, made with Gamay, Cabernet Franc and Côt are deep-fruited and velvet smooth.