La Vigne d’Albert, Chateau Tour des Gendres, France 2016
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Organic – family owned – 52 hectares – eco-friendly
Chateau Tour des Gendres
Chateau Tour des Gendres, in the south-west of France near Bergerac, is now controlled by the 3rd generation of the de Conti family, who originally settled in the region in 1925. The 52 hectare estate is home to many of the region’s typical grapes, with whites including Semillon, Sauvignon and Muscadelle along with black grape varieties such as Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. Head winemaker Jean de Conti uses these resources to produce fantastic organic wines that concentrate on fruit, balance, power and freshness.
Certified fully organic in 2005, the estate’s approach was very much a family-orientated decision according to head of communications Luc de Conti, who argues that producing wines that are more with one with their surroundings creates a better life for his family as well. He insists that through learning about the earth, we also learn a great deal about ourselves; a fact that the de Conti family think aid them in producing wines that best express their values, personalities and, above all, their terroir.
‘La Vigne d’Albert’ was produced by the team in honour of their grandfather Albert. The wine is made entirely with grapes coming from Albert’s favourite parcel that he planted by hand by himself around 60 years ago. The grapes from this vineyard (a happy marriage of historical Bergerac varieties: Fer Servadou, Malbec, Cabernet, Perigord Noir, Merlot) are harvested and vinified all together. Indigenous yeast spark a spontaneous fermentation and no sulphites are added at any stage of the winemaking process. The result is a wine that is solid, rustic and intense, with lots of character. Expect bright fruit, green pepper flavours and smoky acidity