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Thomas Batardiere, L'Esprit Libre 2018
100% Chenin Blanc
Fruit-forward, it is bright, zesty and a touch reductive with an amazing minerality and a strong saline stamp.
Organic and Biodynamic.
Most of the 30 to 90-year-old vines are in the lieu-dit L’Éspérance near Rablay-sur-Layon, on a gravelly plateau of red sand, quartz and clay.
Thomas prefers stainless steel to accentuate Chenin’s natural tension, a judicious choice in the recent hot vintages. This wine ages on fine lees without sulphur until bottling in the summer.
Thomas Batardiere is a doer and does not stand still – born in 1980 in Angers, he studied anthropology and got bitten by the wine bug in 2008 while working as a cinematographer. Switching career path he worked as a sommelier first but being drawn to winemaking he decided to join Chateau Yvonne (Saumur, Anjou Blanc). Voluble, passionate and not afraid of a challenge he quickly became Mathieu Vallee’s right-hand man whilst studying viticulture in Beaune.
He finally struck out on his own in Rablay-sur-Layon (Anjou Noir) in 2012, buying a couple of hectares of his beloved Chenin but without any equipment or cellar - which he built later on along with his house.