2021 Nicolas Reau "Attention Chenin Mechant" VDF , Loire Valley, France
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ABOUT THIS WINE
“Attention Chenin Mechant” is made by Nicolas from fruit purchased from his former intern. The Chenin is grown organically but not certified. This wine comes from 2 vineyards.
Hand harvested from vines planted in 2003. Direct press in a horizontal press, fermentation starts in tank and finishes on the lees in used oak barrels. It is then aged for 6 months in used oak barrels.
ABOUT THIS PRODUCER
In 1998 Nicolas Réau took over an estate of 28 ha. In 2001—after three years of analysis, observation and putting his education into action—Nicolas decided to get rid of 23 hectares and only kept five of the best hectares surrounded by a wall. Those five hectares represent the Clos des Treilles (his DBA name). Two additional hectares were replanted bringing the total area to 7 hectares. In 2002 Nicolas made his first vintage, with natural yeast and minimal intervention from the start.
In 2005 Nicolas met someone who changed his future: Sylvie Augereau, the Famous French wine writer and the future herald of natural wines. Today Augereau is the organizer of La Dive Bouteille and is also Nicolas’ wife. Nicolas Réau was quickly welcomed into this growing network of natural wine pioneers (including Marcel Lapierre, Yvon Métras, etc.) and so began the latest movement in French natural wine. In 2007 he carried out his first vintage “sans soufre”, the first of a long series.
Nicolas practices Biodynamics but doesn’t seek the certification. Instead his philosophy is to be guided by conscientious farming so as to produce wines that are clean, distinct and honest. To this end, Réau uses intuition to identify the 2 to 3 day window where the fruit shows phenolic maturity but still has a low potential alcohol. This window is identifiable when the fruit demonstrates the most harmony on the palate, a sensation that is almost impossible to find in vineyards manipulated by chemicals and industrial processes according to Réau. He believes that if you let the climate and vines guide the work in the vineyard, the energy of the fruit will carry through to the finished wine as long as the winemaker refrains from similar interventions in the cellar. With slight variations in ripeness of the individual berries at harvest, Réau’s wines carry a natural acidity, freshness, and personality that cannot be reproduced by any other means.