2020 Domaine des Grillemonts Saumur Cabernet Franc Rose

Year: 2020
Appellation: Saumur, Loire Valley
Country: France
Rose Wine
Alcohol by Volume: 13.0%
Price :


Winery Notes:
Domaine des Grillemont’s lip-smacking Saumur is an example of the excellence that can be achieved with support of great terroir and meticulous winemaking. There are a handful of grape varieties we believe make the most complex and satisfying rosé wines, and Cabernet Franc is surely one of them: The variety’s characteristic spice and mineral savor makes for an exceptionally complex, uniquely refreshing rosé experience. Now that we’re entering peak rosé season, I’d advise stocking up to get you through the next few months in real style-this is a rosé you’re going to remember!

It’s been a heady time for the central Loire Valley these past 20 years. Renowned for top-tier wine for centuries, the region has recently become the de facto center for France’s pursuit of organic viticulture, balanced agriculture, and biodynamic principles. The dynamic husband and wife team behind Domaine des Grillemonts exemplify this regional phenomenon. Thierry and Lydie Chancelle continue a five-generation tradition of winemaking in the region of Saumur. With Lydie working in the vineyards and Thierry running cellar operations, they have brought the levels of winemaking to new heights since taking over in 2000. Chemicals are not used in these sustainably farmed vineyards, with the focus being on natural viticultural practices for the preservation of the soil and healthful biodiversity throughout the property.

Few wine regions in France have seen its reputation soar like Saumur in the past decade. Long known for CheninBlanc-based sparklers, wines from the region now fill the top wine lists in the country, led by cult-level producers such as Clos Rougeard and Domaine Guiberteau. While these producers receive the lion’s share of attention from the press and sommeliers, their prominence helps to shine a light on the exciting wines being made across the entire region. One of the unique traits here is the presence of tuffeau, the soft white limestone that was the source for the famous castles of the valley. Western Saumur marks the beginning of the great ancient seabed of limestone stretching up to Champagne and towards Burgundy, helping to produce brighter, fresher wines than neighboring regions featuring heavier soils.

The Cabernet Franc for this wine is harvested manually and is ‘direct-pressed’ into tank for fermentation and a short period of aging. The pale copper-pink hue in the glass belies the abundance of flavors within. Upon first sniff, this Saumur quivers with wild energy, the Cabernet Franc acting like a sprig of mint in berry granité. Scents of strawberry, cherry, rhubarb, fresh melon, and cranberry pop out of the glass layered with wildflowers, hibiscus, and tangerine zest. The fruit on the palate starts with a gentle raspberry swell but soon pomegranate, plum skin, spearmint, and clementine freshen the palate with tangy zip. Served in all-purpose glasses at 45-50 degrees, this wine should be open after a few minutes without a decant. The long, high toned finish sets this rosé apart, making it a great pairing for summery salads, a light cheese plate or just a glass on its own as an apéritif. When I pull the cork on a rosé, I don’t want something flabby and sweet—I want savor and backbone. This one delivers that and more. Cheers!