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Fermented with indigenous yeasts in concrete and fiberglass tanks. Elevage on fine lees for 4-5 months.
When Damien took over in 2002, at only 22 years old, he started right away to reduce the chemicals used in the vineyard, encouraged by his experience and exchanges with other winemakers in his belief that there was another way of working with the soil, “like using homeopathics instead of antibiotics for humans”. Starting with herbicides and progressively eschewing all systemic chemicals, they’ve been working fully organic since 2005. (The official certification came in 2008, prompted by Coralie; since 2014 the winery is also certified biodynamic by Biodyvin.)
He most probably is – Grange Tiphaine now definitely counts among the most respected estates in the Loire, thanks to both their community engagement (Damien teaches at a nearby lycée viticole and presides over the Montlouis-sur-Loire appellation, one of the most dynamic in the area) and the quality and consistency of their wines. Plus, Coralie and Damien gradually doubled the surface under their care to the current 16 hectares, with roughly half in Montlouis (100% Chenin Blanc, the darling versatile grape) and half in Touraine, dedicated mostly to reds. And thanks to Damien’s meticulous care, the vines are visibly singing, including the gnarly Côt (the local name for Malbec) plants next to the winery that are more than 120 years old.
All the wines, regardless of whether domaine or négoce, are processed in Tiphaine’s winery and receive a very similar, simple treatment – gentle slow pneumatic press, overnight settling (débourbage) in concrete tanks, then fermentation and aging in concrete, clay or neutral oak barrels in the underground cellar, with the time and type of vessel depending on the wine. The whole structure is smartly designed on several levels in order to avoid pumping, which would oxidize and damage the wine, and everything is moved around by gravity. “Be it Trinqu’ames [well-priced négoce white] or Les Épinays [single-vineyard Chenin from a top-notch plot, one of Damien’s crown jewels], we do the same work, apply the same rules in the winery,” Coralie emphasizes solemnly, “there’s no way we would have super good wine in the higher-price range and average wine on the lower end. We’re not cheating, there’s the same amount of love in each cuvée. Our aim is to have fair wines.”
Denny & Katie
Your friendly neighborhood wine shop and tiny bar, focused on small production wines and conservas. Connect with us on Instagram for suggestions on your next bottle and to follow along in our downtown Lafayette wine journey.
Visit us to shop and hang in person or order online for quick and easy pick up.
210 EAST VERMILION STREET LAFAYETTE, LA 70501
Friday & Saturday
Closed Sunday & Monday