Awards and citations:

1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award

Friday, 2 October 2015

#2015Loire: Saumur Champigny – 30th September 2015 (part one)

Picking in Le Grand Clos, Château Villeneuve, Souzay-Champigny
(above and below) 

Jean-Pierre Chevallier, Château de Villeneuve  
Busy supervising both the vineyard and the chai
– keen to finish before the potential alcohol goes too high 
– already at 13.5%

Picker with church of Souzay-Champigny behind

Autumn advances


Before touring the Saumur-Champigny vineyards
we needed lunch@Le Pot de Lapin in Saumur


Our first visit of the afternoon was to Patrick Vadé at the Domaine St Vincent. Patrick is currently the president of the Saumur-Champigny Syndicat. Patrick: "The Ban des Vendanges was on Monday. We have done the Premier Tri for the Chenin (Saumur Blanc) as well as for our Crémant and we have started on the Cabernet Franc today. The potential degree of alcohol is between 12.5-13. We are seeing a little bit of grape shrivelling. With this fine weather – the sun and the drying wind – the vignerons are taking their time to start. We pick the Cabernet by machine except for the Vieilles Vignes.

After a quick visit to Château de Villeneuve (see above) I dropped into to see Philippe Porché at Domaine de Rocheville. Philippe was happy with the way the harvest was progressing, although this vintage – his 11th – was unusual in that normally the Chenin and Cabernet Franc have different picking dates. This time it is a question of switching between the varieties. We didn't the Crémant last Thursday, the rosé on Friday and started on the Saumur-Champigny on Monday – degrees are between 12.5˚ and 13˚. Tomorrow (Thursday 1st October) will be a white day and on Friday back to the reds."

Next stop Domaine Filliatreau where I saw both Fred and Paul (Fred's father). Fred: "We started on the white on Monday (12.7˚ potential) and moved onto the reds on Tuesday – 12˚-12.5˚  

Domaine de Rocheville, the winery at Parnay 
(above and below)

Chenin Blanc@Rocheville

Chenin Blanc@Rocheville (CRM)
Fermentation vat for visitors @Château de Chaintré


Harvesting in the Domaine des Ellettes
Jean-Jacques Derouard
(above and below)


A shorter second post on visits (30th September) to Saumur-Champigny producers to follow.

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