Auvergne, France

Catherine Dumora

(S)Rab 2021

£43

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CATHERINE DUMORA
(S)Rab 2021
Auvergne, France

Made from a rare clone of Petite Syrah, this is deeper, darker and more heavily set than Z(i)du. The nose offers an explosion of brambly fruits, whilst pitch-perfect tannins frame sunkissed notes of black olive, wild fennel and brine. A wine that positively screams of sunshine and calls for lamb on the grill.

Petite Syrah

ABOUT THE PRODUCER

Originally from just south of Bordeaux, Catherine Dumora studied anthropology and travelled the world gaining experience and an appreciation for the ways of farming from yesteryear. Eventually relocating to the Auvergne, she discovered a group of talented, visionary vignerons making a kind of wine she felt an instant connection to and 2012 she began working in vineyards alongside her partner at the time, Manu Duveau, with the two producing some truly memorable wines under various monikers.

In 2019 Catherine moved to Lamontgie in the Puy de Dôme’s south to start afresh and now tends a hectare of vines between forty and eighty years old, spread out across small parcels hidden amongst meadows and forest. Facing west, the vines benefit from a constant breeze and are planted over a fascinating mix of granite, quartz and sand, offering an interesting counterpoint to the basalt soils that define much of the region. To supplement the grapes harvested from her own vines, she also purchases grapes from local paysans and further afield from a friend in the Minervois.

In the vineyards Catherine adopts a minimalist approach, working by hand with little in the way of equipment. There is a real focus on soil health and the promotion of plants that are beneficial to the vines. So far she has almost entirely eschewed the use of treatments, though having suffered significant losses, in the future her focus will be on infusions of wild plants to give the vines the extra strength they need.

In the cellar, Catherine’s approach is led by intuition, instinct, feeling and emotion. She decides how to proceed based on the fruits of each harvest and aims merely to guide the wine on its journey from plant to glass. In doing so she produces some of the most thoughtful, original wines we have tried.