Pierre Clément studied oenology in Dijon and his savoir faire with Pinot Noir is evident in the domaine’s rose and red wines. The grapes for this cuvée come from 20 to 40-year–old vines planted on ideal clay-limestone soils. They are hand-picked at full maturity, at the same time as the ones for the domaine’s Menetou-Salon Rouge. Both wines are made from the same parcels, picked at the same time. The yields are kept to 45hl/ha. The Rosé represents 20% of the domaine’s red wine production.
Once picked, the fruit descends to the winery by gravity flow and is selected on a sorting-table. The whole clusters are pressed using a pneumatic press while being protected from air contact. The juice rests in tank for 10 days at a very low temperature of 4C to stabilize and develop aromas and flavors. The juice is cleared (débourbage) and then fermentation begins with the native yeasts. This phase lasts for about one month at low, controlled temperature (15C) in stainless steel tanks. The young Rosé is then aged in tank on its fine lees until bottling in February.
Light pink color, extraordinary aromatic character and mineral inflected strawberry, cherry and pomegranate. Pure Pinot Noir fruit. On the palate, the sensation is at once rich, expressive and very fresh. About 1500 cases are made annually.
About the Producer
The Clement have been wine-growers in Menetou-Salon, a quaint country village about 20 minutes southwest of Sancerre, since 1560 (16 generations). Isabelle and Pierre Clément, now joined by their daughter Anne, own 70 hectares of the finest, southwest exposed hillside vineyards in the appellation - shared by around 25 producers. The production is 80% white wine from Sauvignon Blanc and 20% red, from Pinot Noir. While Menetou-Salon is on the same side of the Loire River as its more famous neighbor Sancerre, it has the same fossil-rich Kimmeridgian limestone-clay soils that are prevalent in Chablis. These Kimmeridgian soils impart the distinctly complex, aromatic and elegant personality to Clément’s wines. The total production is around 600,000 bottles per year.
Farming/vinification practices: as of January 2022, the Clements are in their third year of transition to organic certification, expected in 2023. The Clements have worked their soils mechanically for many years. Grass is left to grow between the rows to protect against rot (it absorbs moisture). Only indigenous yeasts are used. All the tanks are temperature-controlled through a central computer that can be accessed remotely. The wines are vegan.
Isabelle et Pierre Clément