This wonderful expression of Gamay comes from a thirty year old parcel planted over sandy soils. The grapes were fermented as whole bunches for a fortnight, before being pressed back to tank for seven months of ageing. Dark and brooding, this captures the warmth of the vintage brilliantly, displaying a pleasant depth and density, with heady notes of plum, earth and minerals. A wine we will be reaching for time and time again over the cooler months.
ABOUT THE PRODUCER
Baptiste Cousin is the fourth generation of vignerons to tend his family’s vineyards around the village of Martigné-Briand in Anjou. The son of legendary paysan Olivier Cousin, it is little surprise that he has continued the family’s tradition of tending this land with great care and producing pure, soulful wines of real vigour.
Growing up in the vines, Baptiste worked for several years learning alongside his father and has been making his own wines for the past decade. Today he and his wife Gael farm four and half hectares of old vines planted amongst fruit trees and forests across three parcels. The terroir varies between quartz, schist, loam, clay and limestone and having been in the family for many years, the majority of the vines have never been subjected to chemicals.
Their work is certified organic and all ploughing is done by Gael with the help of the family’s horses. Outside of the growing season, sheep and goats roam free, eating weeds and in turn fertilising the soils. Positively teeming with life, they are amongst the most beautiful vineyards we have seen.
A few years ago Baptiste and Gael bought the Château de Boisairault, an abandoned old farm from the 1600s hidden away amongst the forest. Little-by-little, they are restoring it to its former glory. The wines are made in what was the château’s cellar, a beautiful space dating back to the 1800s which had been almost completely consumed by the surrounding woodlands when they arrived here.
Using the simplest of tools and techniques, Baptiste produces nourishing wines of rare purity. Built on a backbone of pristine fruit, they speak highly of his family’s farming tradition and possess a remarkable sense of place.