2012 Chateau Yvonne Cuvee Yvonne Saumur Champigny Cabernet Franc
100% Cabernet Franc. Biodynamically farmed and certified organic. From 2 hectares of vines ranging from 5 to 80 years in age. Clay/limestone soils over tuffeau stone. Hand-harvested in small bins. The cold temperature in their caves delays fermentation and gives a natural pre-fermentation maceration. Native yeast fermentation in 38 hl foudres for 4 weeks. Malolactic fermentation occurs naturally during aging in oak (20% new barrels for 12 months). Bottled unfined and unfiltered.
Located in Parnay, Chateau Yvonne has been surrounded by vineyards since the middle ages, when the monks at the Abbaye de Fontevraud brought their influence to the region. The Chateau dates to the 16th century, but not much is known until 1813, when a local winemaker moved in and began producing wine on site. In 1997, Yvonne and Jean-François Lamunière decided to recreate the abandoned vineyard with the help of Françoise Foucault. In 2007, Matthieu Vallée took over and decided to keep the name Chateau Yvonne in hommage to the incredible work done by the previous owners. Today the domaine is one of the best producers in Saumur, composed of 3 hectares of Chenin Blanc and 8 hectares of Cabernet Franc, spread out over 28 small plots in three villages. The vineyards have been farmed organically (Ecocert certified) since 1997 and biodynamically since 2012. Yvonne’s production remains extremely low, averaging only 2000 cs annually. All vineyard work here is done manually, and Matthieu makes the wines with as little manipulation as possible: native yeast fermentation, no additions other than SO2, slow malolactic fermentation, minimal racking, and bottling unfined and unfiltered. The dominant soils here are limestone and tuffeau stone but outcroppings of gravel and sandy clay give completely different expressions of Cabernet Franc and Chenin Blanc.