Clau de Nell

Loire, France

Cabernet Franc, Anjou AOC – 2014

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  • Vineyard Profile

    • Cultivation: Covering the vine stock with soil in autumn, plowing-down in spring, tilling and allowing natural grass to grow between the rows; biodynamic practices include infusions and plant decoctions applied to the vineyards according to the lunar calendar. DEMETER Certified 100% Biodynamic.
    • Size: 5 hectares (12.35 acres)
    • Vine Age: 35-45 years
    • Soil: Silty-clay terroir, consisting of sandstone grit and red flint on tuffeau (limestone)
    • Training: Guyot Mixte pruning system
  • Vintage Report

    • Winter started with mild temperatures and low precipitation causing the blooming cycle to start early in the spring. March and April were unusually warm, leading to an early budbreak around April 10th. The growth slowed down in May as temperatures lowered and rainfall increased. June saw an increase in temperature and low amounts of rain. Flowering began around June 10th. Regular conditions in July and August created the perfect environment for the vine’s growth. The canopy and clusters developed well and rapidly under good conditions. The grapes reached great maturity thanks to a warm month of September. The harvest took place in idyllic condition without rain and pleasant temperatures.

    • Harvest Date(s): October 8-10
    • Yields: 37 hl/ha (2.74 tons/acre)
  • Vinification

    • Destemmed grapes were fermented using native yeasts; average of 30 days maceration without extraction; gentle cap-punching; limited pump-overs; and infusion techniques at temperatures of 18 C to 25 C (64 F to 77 F). Slow and gentle pressing in a pneumatic press.

    • Barrel Aging: 18 months on fine lees in French oak casks used five times previously; in ancient troglodyte cellars cut into the limestone hillside on the property
    • Filtration: None
    • Fining: None
    • Bottled: April 27, 2016, a "fruit day"
  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 100% Cabernet Franc



  • Cabernet Franc, Anjou AOC – 2014 – 90 points – Wine Spectator

    "A gutsy style, with a bolt of smoldering tobacco leading the way, followed by a mix of dark cherry and currant fruit, bay leaf, tapenade and humus notes. Fresh acidity drives the finish, and this should mellow nicely with some modest cellaring."

  • Cabernet Franc, Anjou AOC – 2014 – 91 points – Wine Enthusiast Best of the Year

    “This is a rich, smoky red-fruit-flavored wine. … it is made from biodynamically grown grapes. Wood aged, it shows spice as well as the cool fruitiness that gives the wine both its crispness and aging potential.”

  • Cabernet Franc, Anjou AOC – 2014 – 91 points – The Wine Advocate

    “… perfectly balanced bouquet of dark ripe fruits, graphite, herbal and floral aromas … balanced and velvety textured ... aftertaste is lovely aromatic in its fruit, floral and mineral aromas. A gorgeous wine of great purity, finesse and elegance.”