TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

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Robert.A.Jr.
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TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#1 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » September 2nd, 2015, 4:44 pm

Cool, a wine that has not been noted on this site. No notes on CT for the 2012, either. So, I cannot make a mistake, right?

Been tasting through the various cab franc cuvees made by Thierry Germain. Really dug his Franc de Pied, notes here:

http://www.wineberserkers.com/forum/vie ... d#p1657119

This Clos de L'echelier rouge is a new site acquisition from Germain, composed mostly of cab franc and a small amount of chenin blanc. The soil composition is rocky limestone with relatively little top soil. This cuvee is 100% cab franc.

Pop and pour, on glass two, probably open 30 minutes.

Darker in color than the magenta, almost neon Franc de Pied. Still tight and youthful but I've been working it in the glass, coaxing it into showing me some love. Spicey red fruits on the nose, wild strawberries, cherries, small red berries. A very subtle tinge of green, but remarkably clean on the nose. Doesn't throw the funk, ash and bell pepper that I adore in Loire cab franc. But I do like this elegant wine. The palate reveals some rounder dark fruits lifted by the tart, crispy red fruits, some dry earth and sweet maduro tobacco. Fine grained tannins on the finish, still chewy, but sweet tannins. This wine needs a few years to shed its tight baby diapers but I suspect that it will evolve quite nicely. I'm really liking what I see and looking forward to day two to see if it opens further and shows me more of its potential. A little pricey at $50-$60 but always fun to try a new Loire wine with some pedigree.

(91+ pts.)

"@lf3rt was clearly raised in an outhouse in the Loire. . . ."

Kenny H (circa 2015)

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Glenn L e v i n e
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TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#2 Post by Glenn L e v i n e » September 2nd, 2015, 5:53 pm

We just had this wine and your note is way more in depth than what I would have penned. Why does Loire Cab Fr have to be elegant and light like Burgundy?

I'm not sure but I stuck the rest of the bottles deep hoping for better things down the road.
"Never lose sight of the fact that it is just fermented grape juice" - a winemaker and negotiant in Napa Valley, CA

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Robert.A.Jr.
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TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#3 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » September 2nd, 2015, 6:05 pm

Well, I definitely did not fine this wine light in any sense of the word, but most certainly would have loved more funk.

"@lf3rt was clearly raised in an outhouse in the Loire. . . ."

Kenny H (circa 2015)

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Chris Tuttle
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TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#4 Post by Chris Tuttle » September 3rd, 2015, 9:06 am

You had me until "tight baby diapers."

Hahaha. But really, I enjoy Loire CF almost as much as you do and always appreciate different expressions of the grape.

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TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#5 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » September 3rd, 2015, 11:06 am

Chris Tuttle wrote:You had me until "tight baby diapers."

Hahaha. But really, I enjoy Loire CF almost as much as you do and always appreciate different expressions of the grape.
Just kidding, just kidding. Sadly, there was no poopy in this Cab Franc!

"@lf3rt was clearly raised in an outhouse in the Loire. . . ."

Kenny H (circa 2015)

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TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#6 Post by Michae1 P0wers » September 3rd, 2015, 12:08 pm

That is very high pricing. You'd expect something outstanding at that price, since it puts it above almost any Loire CF other than Rougeard and maybe a few others. How much was the FdP?

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TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#7 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » September 3rd, 2015, 5:05 pm

Second night and this wine is really showing some serious depth, lots of earth, some traditional Loire Cab Franc flavors of ash and pepper, and a sweet/tart red fruit that is very appealing. I dig this wine, but have to admit, the price is hard to justify. Pricing itself above Baudry's Croix Boissee and Plouzeau's ante-phylloxera is a mistake. This is a fantastic $30 bottle of Loire Cab Franc. At the $50-$60 price point, I may grab one here or there. I think I ordered the 2013. This estate's Franc de Pied is more interesting, and I am a buyer at it's $45-$50 price point.

"@lf3rt was clearly raised in an outhouse in the Loire. . . ."

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TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#8 Post by Glenn L e v i n e » September 3rd, 2015, 5:25 pm

Sounds like checking back in a decade is the move.
"Never lose sight of the fact that it is just fermented grape juice" - a winemaker and negotiant in Napa Valley, CA

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Re: TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#9 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » November 10th, 2019, 4:36 pm

Glenn L e v i n e wrote:
September 3rd, 2015, 5:25 pm
Sounds like checking back in a decade is the move.

Well, I checked back in 5 years, like right now. Just pulled a smattering of Cab Francs from storage for weekday drinking. I also have a mixed case of this domaine coming in this week, all bought on clearance. At $30, I buy Theirry Germain’s stuff all day long. At $60, I pass. See comments above on that point.

Back to the wine, lovely stuff. Super bright and crunchy red fruits. Starting to reveal more of the archetype Loire CF notes that I adore, bell pepper, ash, earth. Still showing structure and tannins. Doc is right, could use another 5 years.

(91 pts.)

4A7F274F-D479-43EB-A1D8-943D5BC14229.jpeg

"@lf3rt was clearly raised in an outhouse in the Loire. . . ."

Kenny H (circa 2015)

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Re: TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#10 Post by Julian Marshall » November 11th, 2019, 1:13 am

Thanks for the update - I have a bottle of this so will wait a bit longer. I've only ever tried a Marginale 08 from this producer and was only partly convinced - I liked the bright, crunchy red fruit, which was just as you describe, but I got bored after the second glass. I've got a case of various cuvées, including several FDPs, so hopefully the others will be more impressive. I agree about the prices, too - it's a wine to buy on special offer because at the normal rate, it's expensive compared to other Loire stars.

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Re: TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#11 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » November 11th, 2019, 4:34 am

I’ve never been thrilled by the Marginale cuvée.

Memoires is the intriguing cuvée with vines of 115+ years on average, including some Franc de Pied.

"@lf3rt was clearly raised in an outhouse in the Loire. . . ."

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Re: TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#12 Post by Julian Marshall » November 11th, 2019, 7:07 am

As luck would have it, Mémoires is the only one I don't have - I shall look out for a bottle.

BTW I did have a very interesting Joguet last week - Les Varennes 2003 (not the FDP one). I was very impressed by the elegance and the freshness of the fruit, ripe but not overripe, one of only a small number of wines from anywhere that actually tastes good because of the vintage, rather than in spite of it.

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Re: TN: 2012 Domaine de Roches Neuves Clos de L'échelier rouge (Saumur Champigny)

#13 Post by Steven Dilley » November 11th, 2019, 8:05 am

When it comes to their reds, the Memoires is where it's at, but it's really their whites that excel.

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