Andrew Guard

2018 Cheverny Rouge 'La Caillère', Clos de Tue Boeuf

100% Pinot Noir. Named for the site, La Caillère is a 1.35-hectare estate plot of 35-year-old vines on sandy, red-clay soils; it is also incredibly rocky, a fact built into its name, which is derived from caillasse, meaning "hard rocks". Caillère is organically farmed and harvested by hand. Like all of the Tue-Boeuf reds, the wine goes through whole-cluster, open-top, semi-carbonic fermentation in vat; La Caillère is then pressed, aged for 10-12 months in used Burgundy barrels and 400-liter demi-muids, and bottled unfiltered with minimal sulfur. Along with La Guerrerie, this is the longest-aged of the reds. Tue-Boeuf pure Pinots are fragrantwith lively acidity and light body. Since La Caillère lies within the original Clos, the home estate of Tue-Boeuf in Cheverny, the full estate name features prominently at the top of the label; the wine is classified as Cheverny AOC

Clos de Tue-Bœuf is run by two brothers, Jean-Marie and Thierry Puzelat, who tend their 10-hectare family estate in Les Montils (in the Cheverny AOC) and rent 6 hectares in a village nearby, in the Touraine AOC. The brothers were luck, their father had always worked Clos du Tue Boeuf with a very limited range of organic products and so the soils are alive; he also had never machine-harvested his vineyards or used industrial yeasts. The resultant wines are vibrant, translucent, and explosively flavourful and in many ways taste like they are home-made in that they have an honesty, truthfulness and wholesomeness in their flavours.