LE VAU RENOU
Two vineyards lying on the gentle slopes of Saint-Nicolas, home to the historic Vau Renou cellars. One lies on Turonian chalk which also forms the walls of the cellars.
The other, 100m away and 15m higher elevation, is comprised of clay and flint.
It is important to avoid compacting clay and chalk soil, and to prevent erosion of the beautiful hillside terroir. Therefore, we opt to let the natural green cover grow and avoid working the soil as much as possible.
At the start of winter, we cover the base of the vines to protect them from frost.
We aim to maintain a natural balance to ensure the vine does not succumb to the vagaries of the weather (drought, heavy rainfall). We achieve this balance by adding a small quantity of our own compost, prepared with biodynamic ingredients. In the spring, the green cover, which is rich in natural flora, effectively controls the rate of growth of the vine to produce wines which are very true to terroir. We use a mix of plants (meadowsweet, nettle, yarrow, dandelion and horsetail) which we gather ourselves, infuse and spray. This reduces the amount of “Bordeaux mixture” required.
Vinification and Ageing
Our aim is to harvest a perfectly healthy grape at optimal ripeness. The bunches are destemmed, and the grapes sorted a second time before fermentation begins using the “vinification intégrale”method. (Click on the link to watch the video) (for 50% of the grapes).
This involves putting 50% of the berries directly into demi-muids (500L oak barrels) and 50% are put into big fermenters. Only natural yeasts are used.
After 3 to 5 weeks maceration the wine is transferred to barrels from Atelier Centre France and Saury. 25% into 228L barrels, 50% into 500L barrels, and 25% into amphoras. The wine rests in the Vau Renou cellars for 24 to 30 months at an ideal temperature and humidity.