ROMAIN DES GROTTES, SAINT-GERMAIN NUELLES, BEAUJOLAIS

Romain Des Grottes is an atypical Beaujolais producer. Let’s start with the vines, after experimentation with one parcel removing half the vines and planting wheat in between proved successful in the face of difficult vintages he applied this to his whole vineyard, effectively planting 4 hectares of vines on an 8 hectare surface, as he says though 'Yield per hectare doesn’t mean anything anymore," he says. "We should be talking about yield per plant.'. The way he vinifies is also unique, picking a week early the bunches that aren’t to make his direct press 6% Pet Nat, also making a Pied de Cuve with those grapes which he adds to the bunches he picks a week later for his regular wines. This steers the wines in the right direction quickly, needed as they are bottled as primeurs essentially. The wines actually age very well and we tried a bottle from 2006 which was incredibly vibrant and complete.