Lots of blueberry fruit here and a touch of liquorice and thyme
Food match: lamb cutlets with baby veg, duck rillettes, or served chilled with a ratatouille
Produced not by French but Japanese winemaker: Hirotake Ooka
Please note that this wine is playful, a bit fizzy and appears as if it is just straight from a barrel. It is fresh and needs about an hour of aeration to become more stable.
Located in: Saint-Joseph, Northern Rhone, Italy
Grape varieties: Grenache & Syrah
SHORT HISTORY: Hirotake began studying Chemistry and Biology in Japan, but decided midway through his studies that he wanted to make wine and left home for oenology school in Bordeaux. While in school he became enamoured with the wines of the Northern Rhône and upon graduation approached Theirry Allemand for a position, but none were available. He ended up working with winemaker Jean-Louis Grippat and when Grippat’s vines were acquired by Guigal, Hirotake worked his way up to Chief of Vineryard Management for Hermitage and St. Joseph vines for all of the Grippat and Vallouit estates. At this time he was also spending his weekends working with Allemand, and was becoming more and more convinced that wine should be made without additives. When a position opened in the early 2000’s with Allemand, Hirotake left Guigal and at the same time he purchased a few vines and a winery in the town of St. Peray.
TERROIR: Mica-schist and granite soils
VITICULTURE: Absolutely no vine treatments - not even ones allowed in organic viticulture, manual harvest
VINIFICATION: Winemaking involves whole grapes with a few days of carbonic maceration and punching down each day and 15 to 20 days of maceration in tank. The wine is aged for 24 months in fibreglass tank without filtration, fining and sulphur.