Louis-Antoine Luyt - Pipeño Portezuelo (1L)
Region: Itata Valley
Grapes: Moscatel, Chasselas, Sémillon, Torontel
Age of vines: 100-200 years old
Fining/Filtration: Light filtration at bottling (non-sterile)
Tasting Notes: Wild Flowers, Honey, Smoke
The fruit is harvested by hand and manually destemmed using a zaranda (a traditional mat used to separate the berries from the stems). Spontaneaous fermentation and maceration (10-12 days) occurs in open wooden lagares. It's then racked to stainless steel and bottled within a month of harvest. S02 specifics are: half a gram per hectoliter added after fermentation for transportation, half a gram at racking in the cellar and one to two grams added at bottling.
Made in a primeur style for immediate consumption, Pipeño is derogatory slang for "peasant wine" and is usually made with the Paìs grape. Louis-Antoine is largely responsable for reclaiming the term, highlighting unique terroirs and farmers: each bottle sports the name of a sub-region, and is either purchased fruit he's vinified or finished wine made by the farmer. All Pipeños come in one liter bottles.
Farmer Patricio Martinez tends organic, dry-farmed bush vines ranging from 100 to 200 years old on red clay soils rich in decomposed granite, in the hills of the Portezuelo sub-zone of the small wine region of Itata.
About the Winemaker:
He may be a native Burgundian, but Louis-Antoine Luyt has quickly become a seminal voice in the fight for independent, terroir driven winemaking in Chile. In a country where wine production is run almost entirely by enormous industrial wineries, L.A has managed to source fruit and rent vines from independent farmers throughout the Maule Valley. Furthermore, his insistance on dry farming, horse plowing, organic viticulture and native yeast/intervention free winemaking are welcome proof that wines outside of Europe can succesfully be produced with this work philosophy.