Red Wines

Natural red wines

Natural red wines are made exclusively from grape varieties with red skins. They are cultivated according to the principles of organic and biodynamic agriculture, without synthetic pesticide treatments, with manual harvesting and without the addition of sulphites in the cellar, or with reduced doses.
These are wines whose red color can evolve into different shades, from pale ruby ​​to deep purple, and which are found in all the wine-growing regions of France. They represent more than half of the wines produced in France at present, with different wine profiles depending on the soils, climates and grape varieties used.

Production of natural red wines

Natural red wines are made according to the principle of maceration. The biodynamically grown red grapes are picked by hand once optimal maturity has been achieved in order to preserve the physical and taste integrity of the berries. The latter are incorporated without adding sulphites in concrete or stainless steel tanks, with or without their stalks, and are left to macerate in their own juice for a variable period of time. Gentle and regular extraction operations (punching down, infusion, pumping over, etc.) can be carried out. These operations will make it possible to provide the wine with more or less tannins, which constitute the color, astringency and bitterness of natural red wines. In fact, these elements being contained in the skins of the berries, contact with the juice allows them to be gently extracted. The fermentation of grape juice is carried out by yeasts naturally present on the grape berries. Once the alcoholic fermentation is complete, the grapes are separated from the juice and then pressed. These so-called free-run juices and press juices are then generally blended until the right balance between acidity and astringency is found.

The wines are then aged in vats or barrels, depending on the desired wine profile: more tannic, massive wines, for aging and with aromas relating to the use of wood, or lighter wines, for more immediate consumption, with fresher fruit notes.

The different natural red wines

Natural red wines are present in all the wine-growing regions of France, each with its specific soil and climate, and associated red grape varieties. Depending on the grape varieties and winemaking techniques used, red wines can present several very distinct profiles and characteristics. Wine regions producing natural red wines are led by the Bordeaux region, mainly represented by full-bodied wines made from Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Some illustrious winegrowers wonderfully represent these terroirs like the Amoreau family. Burgundy, another major region in the production of renowned red wines, is specialized in the vinification of Pinot Noir. The Rhône Valley, the third largest producing region, offers natural red wines combining the power of Syrah with the fruitiness of Grenache Noir.
Other regions produce wonderful red wines like the crisp and tannic wines of the Loire with Cabernet Francs, but also full of lightness with Grolleau and Pineau d'Aunis, like the Mosse family. Cool climates which favor a floral and vegetal side of red wines, like the pinot noir of Lorraine and Alsace or the trousseau and poulsard of the Jura.
In warmer climates, the Languedoc, Roussillon and Rhône regions offer us crisp, tannic natural wines with high extractions from Mourvedre or Syrah. On the other hand, processes such as carbonic maceration typical of Beaujolais make it possible to obtain light, natural red wines. Or, light grape varieties like Cinsault and Grenache are used to make lively wines with notes of fresh red fruits, strawberries, raspberries and sweet treats. All these natural red wines are made as naturally as possible without chemical inputs.

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