The soils here are a little more loose knit than elsewhere and fittingly, the wine is a little more soft and supple than the others. This offers everything we love about great Brouilly, carrying plenty of brambly fruit and all the easygoing charm one night expect from the appellation.
ABOUT THE PRODUCER
Originally from Burgundy, Romuald Valot has spent the past decade forging a new path in the remote hills of the Beaujolais.
Born into a family of vignerons, he spent decades working for classic producers in Burgundy and was left disenchanted by the amount of chemicals used in the vineyards and the tricks being played in the cellar. In 2013 he bought a small cottage, cuverie and three hectares of vines in the hills above Beaujeu, way out in Beaujolais’ west.
The vines are planted over granite and are up to a hundred years old. At five hundred metres above sea level, they are amongst the highest in the region but most importantly, they are completely isolated, allowing Romuald to be alone with nature. He has since acquired a further eight hectares of vines elsewhere in the region, and also farms a hectare in the Côte de Beaune’s Ladoix, from which he produces a sublime Pinot Noir.
Romuald practises his own extreme take on organic agriculture. Refusing to spray even copper and sulphur on the vines, he experiments without ploughing or pruning in some parcels. In the event he does treat the vines, he does so with his own infusions of wild plants, which he gathers and mixes with spring water, whey and clay.
Romuald’s winemaking is comparatively simple. He picks early in the morning, fills each cuve with whole bunches and fastens the cap. After around a fortnight of infusion the grapes are pressed slowly over several hours and the wine is moved to old barrels or qvevris for a year of élevage.
Whilst his approach to farming might be radical, his vibrant, nuanced wines are a real exercise in purity and within the context of Beaujolais, are thrillingly unique.