2018 Domaine la Taupe Bruno Bert & Co Côt

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100% Côt. 40% whole bunch, short maceration in fibreglass, then aged in old barrels for 12 months. Zero SO2.

Bert, Nicole and their family moved to the Loire, and began working in the vineyards in 2017. Bruno helped them along the way, and 2018 was their first solo vintage. They continue to work as Bruno did – as naturally as possible. This means biodynamic farming, and hands off in the cellar. The wines are fermented spontaneously with their indigenous yeasts, which is often long and slow due to the cold cellar conditions. No additives are used, including SO2 at any stage. There is no fining or filtration, and the wines are bottled by gravity. These are the truest of natural wines that are alive in every sense, and are a direct representation of the terroir and the year that was.

Little dark berries with big juicy aromas and an element of iron. Big full mid palate, with layers and layers of flavours that unfold and reveal themselves over time. Charcoal, deep black minerals, blackberry and dark chocolate. I love the length here - and the acidity which is perfectly integrated and ever so slightly tart. For a bigger wine it's still so fresh, with a very lively vibe. This is a food wine, one to watch over a few hours while sharing a winter feast. A great wine to age as well.