Soils: Granitic rock
Vinification: Harvested in whole bunches, one single pump over after a week.
Maceration for 2 months in enameled vats
Aging: After pressing, elevage of half of the juice in 225 liter barrels and the remaining half in vats
Fining or Filtering: None
Notes from the Importer: Le Roannais is at the northernmost part of the département called Loire. The Loire river
divides the département in two lateral halves, with the town of Roanne straddling both
sides. The town has a reputation for gastronomie, in part thanks to its relationship with
the family Troisgros.
The Côte Roannaise is not a large vineyard, covering only 220 hectares, with the vines
situated on the foothills of the Mont de la Madeleine to the west of Roanne.
The village of Saint-Haon-le-Vieux was the site of a prehistoric settlement and has been inhabited since the Gallo-Roman period. The vineyards here are planted on its flank,protected to the west by a pine forest, looking down over fields of Charolais cattle on the plain.
Christophe and Géraldine Pialoux of Domaine du Picatier began making wine in 2007 in
the Côte Roannaise, in the village of Saint-Haon-le-Vieux. The domaine was previously
run by Pierre Pousset who handed over the seven hectare estate and cellar to the
Géraldine was born in the Roannais, about 30 kilometers from the cellar, whilst
Christophe originates from the Auvergne. He studied at the lycée viticole in Beaune
before spending ten years working for Maison Drouhin in Burgundy where they found
mentors in Dominique Derain and his future-successor Julien Altaber.
Their first 10 years were punctuated by difficult harvests with frost and heavy hail,
producing very little wine, which unfortunately led them to sell the chambre d’hotes they had worked hard on developing.
Since 2011 they stopped using any sulfur in the vines, as well as the use of copper
treatment, instead relying on plant decoctions and horn silica preparation.
The vineyards here are situated at an elevation of 400m where the slope meets the
plain. The profile of the soils include sandy granite: coarse-grained granite and
dominant porphyroid granite.
The domaine comprises 6 hectares of Gamay with a single hectare of 40 year old Pinot
Noir planted as well as one hectare of Chardonnay, planted here in the early 1980s.
This is one of the reasons that attracted the Pialoux to the property.