Grapes: Sauvignon Blanc + Chardonnay
Region: Loire, France
Soils: Clay + Limestone
Vinification: The grapes are partly direct pressed and partly macerated for two to three days, the latter giving a boost to the yeasts and helping with natural fermentation. Alcoholic and malolactic fermentation in stainless steel tanks.
Aging: 6 months
Fining or Filtering: Lightly filtered
Sulfur: Minimal at bottling
Notes from the Importer: Since the Middle Ages, there have been records about the lieu-dit “le Tue-Boeuf” and its excellent wines which were enjoyed by the local nobility and the kings of France; the family name Puzelat is mentioned in 15th century documents. History, though, is not the story here. It’s about two brothers, Jean-Marie and Thierry Puzelat, who tend their 10 hectare family estate in Les Montils (part of the Cheverny AOC) and rent four hectares in a village nearby to produce AOC Touraine.
The region, near the hunting grounds of Sologne, has always used a wide variety of grapes. Since the 1960’s, the Puzelats' father had been making his own selections of vines to replant, leaving his sons with vines of Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Gris (since ripped out), Menu Pineau (or Orbois), Pinot Noir, Gamay, Cabernet Franc and Côt (or Malbec). A visit to their cellar feels like a "Tour de France" of varietals, each wine with its distinct personality, lovely label and wonderful name. Some cuvées are so small that there is never enough to go around.
Jean-Marie was joined on the estate by his younger brother Thierry in the early 90’s and they began converting their vines to organic viticulture. When the Cheverny AOC was created with the 1993
vintage, some varietals became outlawed from the blends, and the brothers started a yearly struggle to get their wines accepted under the new appellation (it bears to mention that they were also in their earliest stages of experimenting with sulfur free winemaking).