Clau de Nell

Loire, France

Cuvée Violette, Cabernet Franc-Cabernet Sauvignon, Anjou AOC – 2016

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  • 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

    • The climatic conditions were very beneficial for the vine, fostering the quality of the grapes. Rather mild temperatures at the start of winter ended with lots of rain towards the end of May. July and August were exceptionally dry this year compared to the last 20 years’ average, which helped accelerate the flowering process. The combination of light rain episodes and warm temperatures allowed the grapes to ripen nicely until harvest. The harvest took place in idyllic conditions without rain and during cool temperatures.

    • Harvest Date(s): Hand-picked in 12-kilogram (26-pound) boxes and sorted in the vineyard Cabernet Franc harvested October 15-19; yields were 40 hl/ha (3.0 tons/acres). Cabernet Sauvignon harvested October 15-19; yields were 35 hl/ha (2.8 tons/acres)
  • 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: 12 months on fine lees in French oak (five-vintage old casks), aged in ancient troglodyte cellars cut into the limestone hillside on the property, followed by six months in a stainless steel vat.
    • Bottled: Bottled without filtration or fining on April, 24, 2018, a “fruit day”
  • Technical Information

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

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  • Clau de Nell Cuvée Violette Anjou – 2016 – Wine Specator – 91 Points

    This shows cassis, cedar and black pepper notes, fueled by vibrant acidity and imparting lovely freshness. A very elegant red, with lots of character, this is well-crafted and harmonious. The finish shows a bit of a grip. Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Best from 2020 through 2026.