Valentin Valles

'I have chosen to put birds on my labels, because there is a part of mystery about them. We do not understand everything. How they fly, why they do certain things. It is the same with wine, and that’s what makes it magical.'

Rhône, France

Region

Organic (Uncertified)

Farming

7 hectares

Size

After working with Eric Pfifferling for several years, Valentin settled himself not too far away from Tavel, a mere 30 min drive away in Saint Quentin de la Poterie, a very famous village for local potters. Valentin has been buying organic grapes and making wines there since 2011. Since 2015, he has farmed 7ha of Syrah, Grenache, Cinsault and Sauvignon Blanc.

His winemaking approach is simple ‘Laissez faire’. Grapes are of course hand picked, and carried in 15kg boxes to the cellar. Valentin has a few small stainless steel tanks that he is using for macerating the grapes. The grapes will then be pressed in a very old wooden vertical press, and are then transferred by gravity to barriques. Fermentation in barriques is long and slow, and the only control is Valentin’s palate. Depending on the wines Valentin will decide whether he wants to add S02 or not when blending the different barriques together.

For the Sauvignon Blanc wines, Valentin is picking grapes at different level of ripeness, in small batch, (early - at maturity - at over maturity), that is then blended together providing a great amount of freshness in the wines. Most of what is pressed directly will go in the cuvée ‘Goeland’, while some is left on the skins and will be destined for the ‘Queue de Paon’. He also makes a beautiful lightly macerated Rosé made from Grenache Noir grapes that he calls after the famous Atlantic puffin (bird) 'Lundi'.

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