Anthony ThevenetBeaujolais, France
Anthony Thévenet is a young winemaker who has only been producing since 2013, but in those few years his wines have really made a splash.
He was only recently studying viticulture at school, while working part time for natural wine pioneer Georges Descombes. This was his first experience of learning about natural wine production, an experience extended under the tutelage of Jean Foillard. While Thévenet may be new to the scene, his family certainly is not. His great grandfather worked the vines here, as did his grandfather, from whom he inherited his first two hectares (to which he also recently added a hectare in the Côte Du Py). Some of his vines are 150 years old, standing like historical monuments to his family’s proud history. One of the plots has been there for a century and produces magnificent wine.The terroir is largely of iron-rich sand and granite, known as “rotten rocks”. The shallow soil depth has not stopped the vines from adapting to the often arid conditions, with their roots reaching deep to find moisture. Perhaps one of the reasons for this apparent ingenuity on behalf of the plants is the care they receive from Thévenet, who meticulously tends to them by hand, tilling the soil himself. The soil of Côte Du Py, famous for producing excellent deep red wines, is mostly made up of volcanic rock, schist and blue granite. Summer here is long and hot, followed by cold winters – perfect for growing Gamay grapes. Anthony Thévenet is one to keep an eye on – he’s just getting started.