Aux Plantes, St Emilion Grand Cru, Bordeaux, France, 2019
Growing up in Libourne, it was inevitable that Olivier was to fall in love with the world of wine, but it’s his revolutionary approach to winemaking and desire to break the rules that sets him apart.
Having worked in export sales for a number of negociants, in 1998 he became co-founder and the buyer at ChateauOnline, one of the first e-commerce websites in the wine business. In 2003 he and Anne were married and decided they wanted their own vineyards, as he says: “you would have had to be crazy to buy a property in Bordeaux in 2003” … but that they did. After much searching they discovered a property, whose garden meanders to the bank of the Dordogne, just 5km south of Libourne. At that time the vineyard area totalled 4.5 ha and was planted mainly with Merlot and some old Cabernet Franc. With his father-in-law’s help they bought nearby plots and extended to 8 hectares. The first few years were about slowly replanting and discovering the terroirs and by 2016 all of his vineyards were worked bio-dynamically, with 2019 being the first certified vintage. Because of Olivier’s somewhat “revolutionary” approach to winemaking and love of breaking the rules, in such a traditional region, he created the Bel a Ciao label ... named after a revolutionary song which also features in La Casa de Papel on Netflix (you’ll need to Google it!). Here he produces an exciting Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc orange wine, with grapes sourced from a friend’s vineyard, which by 2021 will be organic.
Harvested by hand from a biodynamically cultivated vineyard since 2019.
After a pre sorting in the vineyard, the grapes are destemmed and free run juice vinified in stainless steel vat with indigenous yeasts at a temperature of between 28-30°C. Maceration takes place over a period of 2 to 4 weeks, then the wine is aged for 18 months in casks and barrels, 30% of which are new oak, as well as a percentage that is aged in clay amphora.
Type: French Casks and Barrels
% wine oaked: 100
% new oak: 30
This excellent St Emilion Grand Cru has expressive and rich red and black fruit aromas and spicy notes. Full bodied, elegant, ripe and deliciously long with well integrated tannins.
A surprisingly good aperitif, this works so well with pinchos, Mangalica ham and Catalonian olives.
6 x 75cl