Winemaker Julie Noël is among the rising stars of the Loire Valley, making some of the most structured, soulful wines in the Sancerre region. In contrast to many estates in an appellation not presently known for complexity, the Noël family maintains an incredibly passionate following in France from their reputation for making classic wines of intensity and grace.
Julie Noël’s Menetou-Salon Rouge is a limited cuvée made from a single southwestern-facing, 1.4ha pinot noir vineyard located near the village of Morogues, 18km southwest of the village of Sancerre. It is an exceptionally graceful and delicious example of pinot noir from the region surrounding Sancerre.
Vintage – The 2019 vintage was a year of high quality and balance. Frost reduced yields during flowering, and a warm summer also stressed the vines and lowered yields; however, the fruit left to harvest was of premium quality. Pinot noir had naturally high acidity, with great harmony between fruit and acid, with excellent structure.
Vinification – The grapes for this cuvée are entirely hand-harvested, with 50% of the grapes destemmed; the remainder are vinified as whole clusters. There is a ten-day maceration with twice-daily pumpovers, but these are short and gentle to preserve the fruit characteristics of the wine. After alcoholic fermentation, the wine is racked once, then left undisturbed in enameled stainless steel tanks until bottling the following summer. Malolactic fermentation is spontaneous. 750 cases produced.