I think I've mentioned before about renting a row of vines in the Loire Valley. These vines are at the Domaine de Salvert owned by Georges Bureau.
It was a cooler morning as we made our way from Domaine L'Etang our accommodation, a domaine that seems as old and as tired as the old dog that stretches out on the front lawn. The clouds were low and threatening and drops of rain could be felt on the breeze. But the greeting we received from Georges warmed the air delightfully. With the bouncing golden Labrador forever at his side (who was clearly in charge), he lead us outside and we walked along the quiet country rode to the vines.
Monsieur Bureau has owned Domaine de Salvert for 10 years now and has seen the trend for demand change from red to rose. The vines range from just a few weeks old up to 45 years old and are a mixture of Grolleau (for the rose), Chenin Blanc and some Cabernet Franc & Sauvignon. Here is a winemaker who is working with nature and the soil to use less sulphates and chemicals to keep the many diseases in check. He's passionate about quality not quantity and you can tell he loves the challenges being a winemaker brings. Phrases such as "but we do not complain" and "we will be crying" are used when talking about the bureaucracy of the french wine industry or the climate changes. His award winning red and is innovative sparkling are made with enthusiasm and determination in an industry thwart with difficulties.