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Michelin Star Wine
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Savennieres Les Vieux Clos Nicolas Joly 2015

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Recommended Michelin Star Wine
One Line Description Savennieres Les Vieux Clos Nicolas Joly 2015, Iconic Biodynamic wine, 100% Chenin Blanc, very full bodied, deep gold colour, expressive, rich, superb!
Production Method Natural, Organic, Biodynamic
Country France French
Region Loire, France
Producer Nicolas Joly
Vintage 2015
Wine Type Dry White Wine
Wine Style Full bodied
Grape Blend 100% Chenin Blanc
Alcohol 13.5% abv
Total Sulphur Level 75 mg/l
Maturation In large wooden casks
Annual Production 5 - 10,000 bottles
Ageing Potential 10 years plus easy
Production Detail Biodynamic
Natural Features Vegan, Unfined, Oxidative Notes, Funky Aromas, Unfiltered


Savennieres Les Vieux Clos Nicolas Joly, Iconic Biodynamic wine, 100% Chenin Blanc, very full bodied, deep gold colour, expressive, rich, superb! The new vintage of Vieux Clos is already drinking well! Chenin Blanc of exceptional depth, complexity and purity, truly one of the world s great terroirs, wine producers and wines! Nicolas Joly is an icon, an uncompromising man who in the 1980s bought a piece of land in the Savennieres region of the central Loire and made an iconic vineyard. That piece of the land was called the Coulee de Serrant and the wine is now highly prized in the Michelin star restaurants across the World. Nicolas says, 'I don't only want a good wine but also a true wine.' Les Vieux Clos is the second wine of the estate but lacks none of the purity and intensity of the Grand Vin. The wine is a deep yellow/gold colour and the aromas are intense of mature fruit and above all minerality. This is a very full bodied white wine but the richness is natural and pure, not extracted but coming from the natural core of the wine and totally in balance with freshness and acidity. At first taste, the wine can seem overly intense verging on oxidation however this is the style of the vintage and it is minerals which give the wine this character, not oxidation. Speaking to Virginie, who now runs the estate, this is a Vieux Clos Vintage to keep or to open and leave for several days to allow the richness to settle and fresh purity of the wine to come to the fore. Nicolas Joly makes special wine and this junior of the estate is an affordable way to taste the work of one of the great wine makers.

The story of Clos de la Coulée de Serrant is unique. Planted in the 12th century by the Cistercian monks, the domaine experienced successive owners and much renown until it was bought by the Joly family in 1962. Nicolas Joly only took over the estate in 1977 when he was drawn home by his innate desire to make wine after several years spent working for JP Morgan in New York and Canada. After studying at Bordeaux University and experimenting with conventional methods, he witnessed disappointing results, so began to rethink. In 1981, he stumbled across a book by the Austrian philosopher Rudolf Steiner who in 1924 theorised about the holistic approach to agriculture which became known as 'Biodynamics'. Seduced by these ideas, Nicolas started applying the Biodynamic principles at the Coulee de Serrant and the results were very promising. The whole domaine was under biodynamic principles from 1984 and was fully certified in 1985. After years of perseverance and hard work, he finally got the recognition from the public and the experts. Nowadays, Nicolas is the spearhead of biodynamic viticulture in France. With 7 hectares planted on steep slopes along the Loire river in the Savennières appellation, Clos de la Coulée de Serrant is one of the greatest wine estates of the Loire valley. The domaine produces 3 wines: La Coulée de Serrant, Les Vieux Clos and Le Clos de la Bergerie. The soils are mainly made of schist and the vineyards of Chenin Blanc are separated by walls like in Burgundy (hence the names Clos). There are no chemical treatments in the vineyards and special care is given throughout the whole process of producing the grapes (like ploughing with a horse for example and using goats to graze the cover crop). In the most extreme vintages the grapes are prone to 'Botrytis' or 'Noble Rot' but Joly doesn't make sweet wines in such years as many others would do. In stead he believes dry wines made from rotted grapes show an incredible depth and express the minerality of the Terroir. The result is always gorgeous grapes that will genuinely express the identity of this unique vineyard through the wines and which are harvested in several sessions to ensure perfect ripeness. Today, the domaine is managed by Nicolas Joly's daughter, Virginie. Under Nicolas' tutelage, the estate has become something of an icon although the style of the wines divides opinion, not least as Nicolas is never shy about expressing his views on what he terms as the terrible cancer which is conventional wine making. He is someone who has lived and worked by extremes and his wines are for those who are looking for the purest and most authentic expression of the grape. We love these wines, as they really are the purest expression of wine we have encountered - so they are an absolute must for wine lovers. For Nicolas Joly, "Before tasting good, a wine must be truly genuine" - and he's certainly hit the mark.

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