Two lovely volcanic wines from the Cotes d’Auvergne

gamay loire pinot gris pinot noir

Two lovely volcanic wines from the Cotes d’Auvergne

auvergne st verny volcans

Cave St Verny make some lovely wines, from the Côtes d’Auvergne, a really interesting but obscure wine region pretty much in the middle of France, which is counted as part of the Loire. It’s based around a volcano,  Puy de Dôme, at the edge of the Massif Central, which makes for some interesting terroirs. The Cave St Verny controls about 40% of the vineyards in the region, and consists of 86 farmers, with 180 hectares of vines between them. 40 of these are in Puy-de-Dôme IGP, while 140 are in the Côtes d’Auvergne AOP. The main grapes? St Verny have 90 ha of Gamay, 60 ha of Pinot noir and 30 ha of Chardonnay. [The co-op also make an excellent Pinot Noir and Gamay under the Puy de Dôme label.]

Cave St Verny The Lost Vineyard Les Coutayes Pinot Gris 2014 Puy de Dôme, Auvergne, France
This is a small experimental parcel of Pinot Gris from the Auvergne region. The 2012 vintage was eaten by rabbits and the 2013 suffered hail damage, so 2014 was the debut vintage. Textured, pure pear fruit with a bit of spice and nice grapiness. This has an appealing rounded, generous personality. It’s a lovely wine showing such prettiness. 93/100

Cave St Verny ‘Les Volcans’ 2014 Côtes d’Auvergne, France
The traditional local blend of Pinot Noir and Gamay. Lovely sappy, green-tinged raspberry and cherry fruit with some nice minerally, stony spiciness. Very fresh and full of interest, this is brilliantly drinkable. 90/100

UK availability: Dreyfus Ashby (note: this is not the same as the US wine company of the same name)

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