Tasting Catherine et Pierre Breton
Bourgueil Sunday, March 10th 2013
Excerpt from KermitLynch.com
"Catherine and Pierre Breton are the real life bon vivantsvignerons of lore. They are passionate about what they do, they enjoy sharing it with others, and they entertain with a generosity and charm. That they make great wine with such integrity makes our appreciation of them complete. The Bretons farm eleven hectares of vines just east of Bourgueil in the village of Restigné. They produce Chinon and Bourgueil, as well as a bit of Vouvray, creating honest wines for both early consumption and longer aging. The Bretons first introduced biodynamic practices into their viticulture in 1994, just after receiving their organic certification in 1991. Recently, they started the three-year process of seeking biodynamic certification. In fact, they have become international icons for the natural wine movement in an area where the climate and soil can make organic viticulture difficult.
The Bretons farm vineyards on varied soil types, including gravel, limestone, clay, schist, and yellow tuffeau. Their wines are made primarily from Cabernet Franc (known in the Loire, curiously, as “Breton”) with small quantities of Chenin Blanc for their Vouvray. Though Pierre is the principal cellar master, Catherine makes a series of cuvées under the label “La Dilettante,” or the Dabbler. Together, they divide their wines into three categories: Natural Wines (for easy consumption), Classic Wines (that represent the typicity of the appellations), and Wines of Terroir (vinified individually by parcel). The Wines of Terroir from Chinon and Bourgueil are destined for long life in your cellar. A 1964 made for unforgettable drinking in 2008! Each of the Breton cuvées is unique, with differences in soil, vinification, and élévage all playing a role while still demonstrating a familial resemblance. Catherine and Pierre are fighting the good fight in a competitive market, adding work to their busy days all in the name of authenticity. Their artistic labels are a bonus."
My Tasting Notes:
2012 Rosé sec la Routinelle
Light color, made from added finished red wine.
2012 Bourgeuil Trinch
Made from clay soils. Expressive Cabernet Franc, wild strawberry, hint of co2 freshness,
2011 Bourgueil Dilletante
This is they're carbonic Macaeration wine, made to drink young, light, fresh.
Very little manipulation in the cellar to avoid any oxidation.
Dry, less intense but more fruitiness. 3 week long carbonic fermentation than matured.
2011 Bourgueil Franc de pied
This is from non grafted American rootstock. This was an experiment to see the difference between the French and American rootstocks. Phylloxera does not affect because they are planted on sandy soils. The vines are also 15 year old vines, after 20 years the bug can reach to affect the vines.
These are from selection massale from Joguet.
2011 Bourgueil Les Galichots
From the vines around the house.
2011 Bourgueil Clos Sénéchal
This is on argil-calcareous soil within a walled vineyard, that his been in the family since the 18th century. This was just bottled a week ago. Aged in fits that are 2-3 year olds.
Beautiful nose, floral, violets, structured tannins, acid and finish.
2011 Bourgueil Nuit d'Ivresse
Wine without any sulphur added. Soft, delicate nose.
2010 Bourgueil Perrières
Red cherry coulis, dense. 70 year old vines. Elevated 2-3 years in barrel,
This is the Breton’s greatest red, from one of the most prized hillside parcels in Bourgueil. The terroir is siliceous clay and limestone, and old vines give very low yields of 20 hectoliters/hectare on average. The maceration is done in open wood vats and the fermentation and élevage is done in 550- L barriques, a variable percentage of which are new. The wine is bottled unfined and unfiltered after two full years in wood.
2012 Chinon Beaumont
Parcel 40 year old vines. Rented vineyards.
Darker, herbaceous, rosemary, more tannic, sweet.
2010 Chinon St Louans
1976 Chinon Beaumont
Made by the producer of the property owner.
83, 76 were great years
A gracious offer to taste an older wine. This wine is over sold,
Roasted fruits dried currants, stewed plums. The wine has development, yet surprisingly fresh. Tannins are light, wild peppercorn, smoked meats.
Vouvray, La Dilettante
Catherine's family is originally from Vourvray.
High mineralitly, mostly clay soils in Vouvray. Meant for aging.
Round, succulent, touch of sweetness with high acid.
Blend of 07/08
Low dosage 0.7 gl
Disgorged to order
A very pure wine, clean, high intense white fruits with a candied ginger, lemon peel, super soft bubbles, touch of lanolin