Chateauneuf Du Pape Brun Avril 2012
Brun Avril’s first vintage under this label was 2009. It marks the beginning of Nathalie and Jean-Jacques Brun’s reign over the vines once tended to by their uncle, and before him their grandfather. They work the land happily alongside their four children, three chickens, and adorable hound Pablo, whose hobby is chasing butterflies. The land is tilled by hand and emphasis on cover crop is important to the health of their vineyards. Their vineyard is blessed with 100-year-old vines and (unusually for Chateauneuf) a lot of it is Syrah. The vineyard sits away from the main road surrounded by woods with a view of the impressive Mount Ventoux.
The Syrah is harvested first about 15 days before the Mouvedre and the Grenache. Because the Grenache and Mouvedre are complante they are harvested at the same time and fermented together. The fermentation temperature never rises about 26 degrees Celsius. It is not meant to be a big wine. Blending only happens shortly before bottling. Before the blending for the final cuvee, which is one of their favorite processes—seeing the differences in the wines each year and determining the best mix for the blend—the wines first sit in tank for 3- 4 months. Usually malo has finished in tank but sometimes it finishes in barrel. The Grenache and Mouvedre go in to smaller 600 liter barrels or demi-muids. Syrah goes into 30 Hectoliter barrels. Aging time in barrel is between 18 to 24 months. None of the wood is new.