Les Quatre Piliers
Valentin Dislodges comes from a long lineage of wine growing. After receiving his bachelors in Amboise and a BTS viti-oeno in Bordeaux, Valentin went to work for Chateau Mangot in Saint-Emilion. Following that, he went on to work in New Zealand in 2015, with a strong focus on the varietal Sauvignon Blanc. Returning back to France, it was natural to spend time in Burgundy and he did so working alongside some of the top white winemakers we know and love, Raphael Coche and Paul Pillot. Additionally he spent time elsewhere, such as Alsace with Vincent Sipp. These mentors with roots in diverse territories have brought a wide array of experiencein both the vineyard and cellar. He returned to the Loire and started his own Domaine, Domaine des Quatre Piliers. Ten hectares between Noyers and Saint-Aignan.He converted the estate to organic, focusing all of hisenergy into the vines while still focusing on details in the cellar such as creating his own barrels in collaboration with Francois Freres. Produced with wood from the estate that he drys and prepares himself. His first vintage was 2020.
Viticulture and Vinification
Just under 10ha, located in Touraine and split into about 15 different small parcels. Upon acquiring the vineyards-the vines have been converted to organic cultivation. About half of the vineyards are planted to Sauvignon Blanc on clay and limestone soils. With Chenin, Cabernet Franc, Pinot Noir, and Cot/Malbec making up the rest. The Cher river acts as a large temperature regulator with close proximity to the vines. There is a large area of tuffeau that has been dug out, creating mineral equilibrium and serving as a natural ventilation system for the vineyard.
This panel of different soils is divided into 4 parcels: Les Puits aux Chiens, totalizing 3.5ha Sauvignon Blanc between 15 and 50 years of age, as well as Chenin vines about 30 years old; at the top of Noyer, there is high white clay with limestone borders with a cooler climate, preserving freshness, high aromatics, and acidity to the wines; To the north is Bernardières, one of the warmer parcels with 45 year-old Cot vines planted in sulphate rich soil close to the Cher river; the Bel Air parcel consists of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc and the Quatre Piliers parcel has 25 year-old Pinot Noir and 50 year-old Cabernet Franc vines planted to a cooler climate at the top of the hill with warmer micro climates at the bottom of the slopes with high red clay content. This complementary mix between warm and cold lands is fostering the subtle equilibrium sought after by Valentin in winemaking, associating robustness from the clay and delicacy from limestone.
In the cellar, there is great focus on controlled pressing - the amount of pressure used, the length of time the grapes are pressed and which juices are used. All the work is done by the moon calendar. Fermentations occur with indigenous yeast, and there is no fining or filtration of the finished wines. The wines are aged at a natural and constant temperature of 13°C in Tuffeau caves at 75% humidity. Cabernet Franc and Cot grapes are carefully de-stemmed before fermenting in tanks for 20 to 30 days. Pinot Noir is cooled down with 20% of entire grapes and ferments for 9 days. Alcoholic fermentation takes places in stainless steel before being transferred to various barrels for malolactic fermentation. White wines only ferment in wood casks, with a varying proportion of new wood depending on the cuvée: 20% for the Grande Cuvée of white Sauvignon, and 30% for the Chenin.