Clau de Nell

Loire, France

Cuvée Violette, Cabernet Franc-Cabernet Sauvignon, Anjou AOC – 2015

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  • Introduction

    • 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.

  • Vineyard Profile

    • Cultivation: Covering the vine stock with soil in autumn, plowing-down in spring, tilling and allowing natural grasses to grow; biodynamic practices include infusions and plant decoctions applied to the vineyards, following the rhythms of the biodynamic calendar. DEMETER Certified 100% Biodynamic.
    • Viticulture: Pruning: Guyot Mixte system of spur pruning for the Cabernet Franc and Gobelet for the Cabernet Sauvignon.
    • Size: Cabernet Franc 5 hectares (12.36 acres) and Cabernet Sauvignon 1 hectare (2.47 acres)
    • Vine Age: 40 years for Cabernet Franc; 60 years for Cabernet Sauvignon
    • Soil: Silty-clay terroir, consisting of sandstone grit and red flint on tuff eau (limestone)
  • Vintage Report

    • Harvest Date(s): Hand-picked in 12-kilogram (26-pound) boxes and sorted in the vineyard Cabernet Franc harvested October 2-10; yields were 37 hl/ha. Cabernet Sauvignon harvested October 10-11; yields were 30 hl/ha
  • Vinification

    • Destemmed grapes were fermented using native yeasts; 30-day 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.

    • Aging: Twelve months on fine lees in French oak, 5 vintage old casks, then six months once blended into stainless steel vat. Aged in ancient troglodyte cellars cut into the limestone hillside on the property.
    • Bottled: Bottled without filtration or fining on March 21, 2017, a “fruit day”
  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 33% Cabernet Franc, 67% Cabernet Sauvignon



  • Clau de Nell Cuvée Violette – 2015 – Wine Spectator – 91 Points

    A bit tight and grippy, but has a beautiful flavor profile ranging from blackberry and cassis flavors to olive, bay leaf and tobacco notes. Loamy earth details emerge midpalate, as well as the fresh acidity, which provides balance and support. Give this some time to integrate. Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc.