The wine comes from 40-year-old vines that grow on gravelly, siliceous-clay hillsides that slope gently down toward the Vienne. The grapes are destemmed, fermented on their natural yeast and matured in large concrete tanks until the wine is bottled in April after the harvest. In the glass, the Chinon Les Graves 2020 has a black cherry color with a bright magenta rim. Aromas of crushed blackberries, sun-warmed black plums, wild blueberries, and lavender emerge at first, then intermingle with suggestions of freshly shaved cedar, toasted quinoa, and sweet poblano peppers as the nose evolves in the glass. On the palate, the juicy, ripe black fruit feels crunchy and vibrant (“dynamisé,” Fabrice calls it), with fresh mouthwatering acidity, lightly salty minerality, and fine silky tannins. The overall impression is of juicy black fruit berry freshness. Drink now–2029.
About this wine producer: When we last visited Fabrice Gasnier at his home in Cravant-les-Coteaux, he had long completed the transformation of his 24-hectare estate to biodynamics, the agricultural discipline based on the teachings of Rudolph Steiner, who is best known today as the founder of the Waldorf Schools. “Biodynamics, according to Fabrice, “seeks to strengthen the vitality and resistance of plants, by improving natural exchanges. It also makes the vine receptive in the cosmos, to the lunar effect. Thus, the expression of the terroir in the grapes is optimized and is found in the wines. Biodynamic wines guarantee a good expression of the terroir.” The entire domaine received both “Ecocert” and “Demeter” certification in 2008.