Benoit Brazilier joined his father, Jean, in 1997 to continue the tremendous history of the estate which was carved out of limestone caves in the 12th Century. Their 60 acres of vineyards spans the scope of Loire wines from Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc to Gamay and our selection, Pineau d'Aunis. The grape appeared in print at about the same time the winery was created, 1183. Pineau is another spelling of word Pinot, which translates to "pin" in French. It means pine cone, which delineates the shape of the grape cluster. Like Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, those clusters resemble a pine cone. It's as simple as that.
For centuries the grape was also called Chenin Noir, meaning it had a kinship to Chenin Blanc. Then it was thought that it had a relationship to Pinot Noir. Neither turned out to be correct with modern day DNA testing leaving its parentage in doubt. However, the quality of the wine has never been in doubt.
These certified organic vineyards average 35 years of age, putting them into the prime of their existence. At this point in the vine's life, it has been around long enough to build a resistance to diseases, making organic farming even easier. The vines also produce less fruit than its earlier years, but more intense.
It may not be in the Pinot Noir family, but it certainly has similarities to that incredible grape. Lush Bing cherry, spice and cotton candy are the order of the day here. Matched with all comers from poached salmon to duck confit it will shine.