Wine Region: Loire Valley - France
Grape: 100% Cabernet Franc | organic & biodynamic farming
Tasting notes: Eclipse is a small production Cabernet Franc from a special 2 ha vineyard in St-Nicolas-de-Bourgueil. The vines are on limestone clay and average 58 years of age. The wine oozes class and refinement but is packed with dense, concentrated black and red fruit aromas along with cedar, cigar and sweet spice notes. Although concentrated the wine has amazing freshness and silky tannins. It is a wine which will benefit from several years aging if you can resist it.
About the winery: Based in Saint Nicolas de Bourgueil, in the Loire Valley’s Touraine region, Frederic Mabileau is a 28ha estate which has emerged over the last 20 years as one of the world’s greatest producers of Cabernet Franc. The Domaine has been run by Frederic’s wife, Natalie and her two sons, Charly & Remy since the tragic passing of Frederic in August 2020.
Frederic planted his first vines in the late 1980’s in the ‘Rouilleres’ vineyard which was owned by Natalie. Here he farmed the grapes for the ‘Rouilleres’ cuvee and later Eclipse. After his dad retired in 2003, Frederic combined his Domaine with his dad's which gave him vineyard holdings in St Nicolas de Bourgueil, Bourgueil, Saumur and Anjou. The Domaine has been certified Organic since 2007 and Biodynamic since 2018. These are some of the most pure and complex expressions of Cabernet Franc we have come across. They are a testament to the love and hard work which Frederic put into his vineyards.
The Mabileau vision of biodynamic and organic viticulture continues, along with the spirit of Frederic’s inexhaustible enthusiasm for experimentation and progressiveness. This means no yeasts are added in the cellar but a reliance on naturally occurring yeasts to start fermentation. In their view this enhances the “sense of place” of these wines. An ambitious new cellar project was completed in 2020, and in 2019 they acquired a parcel of Chenin Blanc in Montsoreau, on a 30% slope overlooking the Loire.
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