Sancerre, Loire Valley
Vincent Gaudry lives in the tiny vintners' hamlet of Le Petit Chambre in Sury en Vaux, 3 kilometres from Sancerre. Sury en Vaux means “the smiling valley”, and it makes much sense when you reach this place. Vincent took over the vineyard from his family in 1993, introducing the start organic and biodynamic farming. In 2002, the vineyard was certified organic, before full biodynamic Demeter certification in 2004. Organic and Biodynamic were essential for two reasons: first for his health and then to respect his terroirs.
As a true minimalist Vincent’s guiding principle is “Trust in Nature”. He makes wine in tune with the power of the elements, with a feeling of being profoundly connected to the land. Inspired by local vignerons of the past from the village, insiders considering Gaudry's wines to be the most authentic expression of Sancerre.
Although biodynamics is one of his pillars, Vincent continues to push boundaries by mixing pragmatism and intuition to pioneer new methods, which has earned him a following. The 9 hectare vineyard is composed of limestone and marl, 90% planted with Sauvignon Blanc and 10% with Pinot Noir. The vineyard averages vines of 40 years of age, planted by massal selection from a plot of 90 year old vines of old Sauvignon varieties. It gives berries of different size and maturity, which Vincent believes brings complexity in his wines.
The grapes are all hand harvested in small baskets. In the winery, Vincent remains a traditionalist, shying away from trends he looks for balance between both varietal and terroir. The wines are fermented in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks, with native yeasts to allow the terroir and varietal expression to shine through. The wines are then aged on lees and are bottled unfined and unfiltered with the bottling date according to the lunar calendar. The result is precisely delineated wines with stony minerality, concentration, texture, weight, complexity and lengthy vibrant finish.
Le Tournebride Sancerre
This 30 years old vineyard is representative of the 3 Terroirs of Sancerre: the stony, rubble-like Kimmeridgian limestone (Caillottes) brings the aromatics, the clay-limestone or marl (Terres Blanches) brings the structure in the mouth and the flint (Silex) the length. The wines are vinified with natural yeast in stainless steel and oak. Each batch moves from one vessel to the other, before final blending and ageing on fine lees. The result is a wine with spice, texture and impressive length, with a mineral finish.
Constellation du Scorpion Sancerre
This wine is dedicated to the biodynamic memories of the elements and named for the scorpion sign, which is sharp like the Silex’s terroir where the vine are planted. The wine is vinified in oak, with time varying each year based on vintage conditions. Scorpion is best enjoyed after a few moments of air - after which it opens to a textured palate of almond, lime-flower and grapefruit. The mineral attack persists, with flint and earth flavours, grilled almond, dried pear, blood orange and apricot. The finish is saline, elegant, clean and long, with lingering white fruits.
White grapes: Sauvignon Blanc
Red grape: Pinot Noir