Clos de la Roilette "La Griffe du Marquis" Fleurie 2020 750ml

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Despite what the name says, the Tardive cuvée from Coudert is a not a late harvest wine but rather a 100% Gamay. Grapes from most of Roilette's oldest vines go into the "Cuvée Tardive" bottling, but a small portion of them dating back to 1930 are reserved for the smallest of all Roilette production, La Griffe du Marquis, the only barrique-aged wine from this cellar. As for the other estate vines, the soils are heavy clay with relatively little granite and quite a lot of the iron-like mineral manganese. The farming is sustainable or lutte raisonnée. All vineyard work is by hand; the soils are worked only superficially, at most twice per year, to protect the roots of the older vines.

Vinification is traditional, semi-carbonic Beaujolais style. The whole clusters are harvested by hand and fermented spontaneously with native yeasts in open-top concrete tank. Maceration lasts around 18 days for La Griffe, with a submerged cap rather than punchdowns. Sulfur use is quite minimal. The wine is aged in used barrique for a full year, so the vintage is always one behind that of all other Roilette wines. It is bottled without fining or filtration. Alain Coudert makes a point of noting that his parents were not aristocracy, but their village nicknames were "Le Marquis et La Marquise", for which this serious wine was playfully named.