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2017.01.19 Forbes - Nicolas Joly Speaks: Godfather Of Biodynamic Wine


Coulée de Serrant is the finest biodynamic vineyards in the world which has fascinated many talented great producers such as Lalou Bize-Leroy and Anne-Claude Leflaive. Coulée de Serrant is "Monopole AOC" that is able to find only few cases for example Romanee Conti and Chateau Grillet. This unique vineyard produces unique wine which is made from 100% Chenin Blanc with botrytis.


Nicolas Joly started Biodynamie in 1980. In 1985 or 1986(according to his memory), Lalou Bize-Leroy visited Coulée de Serrant and she understood everything in a moment, then she decided to implement biodynamie to her vineyards called "Domaine Leroy". After a while(late 80's), Anne-Claude Leflaive visited Coulée de Serrant and she was deeply inspired - maybe you know the rest of the story. All these today's finest and natural wines were not existed without Nicolas Joly's pursuit of truth and its great achievement. After over 30 years management of biodynamie, this vineyard is well-conditioned to express its terroir perfectly. Now this "Monopole AOC" is able to show its maximum potential.

If you stand in this vineyard, you can feel large and deep vibrations. You may understand everything in a moment like Lalou Bize-Leroy. However it is not necessary to go there, because all the elements are perfectly transferred to three wines - Coulée de Serrant, Clos de la Bergerie and Les Vieux Clos - and delivered to your table. Drinking is much more important.


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4950 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2016 750ml 4949 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2015 750ml 4947 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES ROCHE AUX MOINES CLOS DE LA BERGERIE 2016 750ml
Price HK$680.00
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Price HK$450.00
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4950 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2016 750ml 4949 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2015 750ml 4947 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES ROCHE AUX MOINES CLOS DE LA BERGERIE 2016 750ml
Coulée de Serrant is the finest biodynamic vineyards in the world which has fascinated many great wine producers and wine connoisseurs. Coulée de Serrant is "Monopole AOC" that is able to find only few cases for example Romanee Conti and Chateau Grillet. This unique vineyard produces unique wine which is made from 100% Chenin Blanc with botrytis. Coulée de Serrant is the finest biodynamic vineyards in the world which has fascinated many great wine producers and wine connoisseurs. Coulée de Serrant is "Monopole AOC" that is able to find only few cases for example Romanee Conti and Chateau Grillet. This unique vineyard produces unique wine which is made from 100% Chenin Blanc with botrytis. Clos de la Bergerie inherits same style of Coulee de Serrant as well as Vieux Clos. Contains Botrytis too. Clos de la Bergerie is the richest among three cuvees with honey-like stickiness. Gras coats your mouth, seductively sweet, and long finish. This is the wine for pleasure.
4946 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES ROCHE AUX MOINES CLOS DE LA BERGERIE 2015 750ml 4944 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES LES VIEUX CLOS 2016 750ml 4943 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES LES VIEUX CLOS 2015 750ml
Price HK$450.00
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Price HK$350.00
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Price HK$350.00
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4946 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES ROCHE AUX MOINES CLOS DE LA BERGERIE 2015 750ml 4944 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES LES VIEUX CLOS 2016 750ml 4943 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES LES VIEUX CLOS 2015 750ml
Clos de la Bergerie inherits same style of Coulee de Serrant as well as Vieux Clos. Contains Botrytis too. Clos de la Bergerie is the richest among three cuvees with honey-like stickiness. Gras coats your mouth, seductively sweet, and long finish. This is the wine for pleasure. Les Vieux Clos inherits same style of Coulee de Serrant as well as Clos de la Bergerie. Contains Botrytis too. However Vieux Clos is not merely an entry level of Nicolas Joly's wine. Every three cuvees have different characters and size, yet same concentration. Les Vieux Clos has slightly larger-meshed texture than Coulee and its easier to match wide range of cuisines. Les Vieux Clos inherits same style of Coulee de Serrant as well as Clos de la Bergerie. Contains Botrytis too. However Vieux Clos is not merely an entry level of Nicolas Joly's wine. Every three cuvees have different characters and size, yet same concentration. Les Vieux Clos has slightly larger-meshed texture than Coulee and its easier to match wide range of cuisines.
6466 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES ROCHE AUX MOINES CLOS DE LA BERGERIE 2014 750ml 5937 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2013 750ml 1246 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2005 750ml
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Price HK$630.00
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Price HK$1,200.00
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6466 NICOLAS JOLY SAVENNIERES ROCHE AUX MOINES CLOS DE LA BERGERIE 2014 750ml 5937 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2013 750ml 1246 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2005 750ml
An explosion of flavours in the mouth, a sphere of orange blossom, white truffles, saffron and rich lemons. There is a multitude of flavour here, complex like you can barely believe, and yet each one is expressed with delicacy and finesse. Decanter 96, RP92+ Deep gold in color, dark in its earthy savor, this layers floral scents, ginger and ripe pineapple with earthy notes of schist. It has a kind of invisible freshness, open and racy, delicately detailed. Give this time in the cellar and plenty of air; it is used to oxygen and only gains freshness over the course of several days open. W&S93 An alluring whiff of ginger brioche gives way to a restrained palate of mineral, humus, persimmon and clementine. Taut, nervy finish will need some time to open up fully. (WineSpectator)
1202 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2003 750ml 3287 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 1997 750ml
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1202 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 2003 750ml 3287 NICOLAS JOLY CLOS DE LA COULEE DE SERRANT MONOPOLE 1997 750ml
Aromas and flavors of lanolin, buttered brioche, baked apple and cardamom run through this full-bodied white. Predominantly creamy on the finish, with just a hint of bitter almond in the background. (WineSpectator) 1997 is well matured and ready to drink. Beautiful amber colour, honey, sticky, tasty, complex. Nicolas Joly says, 1995 1996 and 1997 were top vintages in 90's for them. 1997 is sweeter than 1996, because 1997 has more botrytis. WS92
   
 
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The "Coulée de Serrant" is MONOPOLE, its size is 7ha only. Located on very stiff slopes, dominating the Loire, the vines resulting from the type of vine "chenin" have more than 35 to 40 years of average age; oldest having more 80 years give wood to make new vines carrying the originality of the place.

Partly cultivated with the horse, or the hand, the average output is with 20/25 hectolitres per hectare (40 authorized). The ground far from thick, (20 with 40 cm on average) is on a red schist bottom obliques which drains the vines perfectly.

The orientation of the slopes is especially Southern/Southern East (thank you to consult the data sheet for more details). The grape harvest is done in 5 times out of 3 to 4 weeks to obtain the most coloured possible maturity and the most marked by the botrytis.

Wine making : out of barrel of 500 liters (never more than new wood 5%).

Production: approximately 20/25000 bottles per annum.


Maturity of grape harvest

It is important to show to the customers the impact of grape maturity on the taste of the wine. We harvest late on purpose to gain in complexity linked with a begining of over maturity; what we call a sort of oxydation on the the grape shouldn't be understood as oxydation linked to a bad cellar gestion.

On the pictures herewith, with 4 harvest on each parcels (link to a real massal selection and no clones on the estate) we never harvest pict 1, but pic 2 and 3 and sometimes a bit of pic 4. This doesn't affect the ageing capacity of our wines.
(Nicolas Joly June 2013)

Natural wine - the wine like a fresh fruits

Indeed, the taste of Nicolas Joly wines are always different. Many people are thinking that it's a bottle variation, or wines are unstable.

However, please imagine fresh fruits and canned fruits. Nicolas Joly's wine(and other good natural wines) are much closer to fresh fruits. As fresh fruits is changing every moment and affected by environment, Nicolas Joly's wine is alive in the bottle and perform differently every season, every day and every time zone, rather than bottle variation. On the other hand, most of wines which are distributed widely are produced as preserved food such as canned pineapple. Its taste is same every day(stable and homogenised) and gettitng older slowly.


Do not confuse oxidation with maturity

Chenin gets its complexity only when it is fully ripe – deep yellow. And only healthy, sustainable farming can guarantee this without grey rot. For this reason, all our grapes are picked in four or five passes as each parcel begins to raisin and form botrytis - thereby allowing the mineral flavors of Chenin to achieve their fullest intensity.

Once uncorked, wines made in this way continue to improve – and are in no way oxydized. To be sure that the color is not oxydation you can make the test yourself by tasting each day a glass over several days without putting the bottle in the fridge just recork. You will see the wine develops for several days and sometimes over more than a week.

If the wine would be oxydized it would be undrinkable.Our wines go well with white meat in sauce, fish with beurre blanc or even simply with a good cheese like goat cheese or Cantal. Uncork few hours in advance or carafe the wine. Serve at 14°C / 57°F. (by Nicolas Joly)

Chenin with noble rot

I personally believe that chenin - along with Riesling - is one of the very few grape varieties which can only fully express their deep personalities through a fairly advance maturity which contains some “noble rot”.

This is different from late harvest. This noble rot comes for only a few days when the grape is beyond the deep yellow level. It brings to the wine a deep golden color, sometimes dark amber – but this colour must not be confused with oxidation.

At this ripening level, yield is substantially reduced while a higher level of concentration showcases the minerality of the vineyard site (schist, quartz, flint).

This level of maturity can only be reached successfully if all chemical treatments against rote are avoided. These treatments upset the subtle balance of maturity. It therefore implies an organic or biodynamic farming. (
Nicolas Joly)

Grapes & Grains: Nicolas Joly, Man of the Earth