2016 Philippe Viret MPN
Region: Southern Rhone Valley < France
Grapes: Cinsault, Counois, Sciaccarello, Mondeuse, Muscat d’Hambourg
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Biodynamic++ farming, calcareous clay soil; fermented and aged in amphora, then bottled unfined/unfiltered with no added SO2; 12.5% ABV; 410 cases
Winemaker: Philippe Viret
Going way beyond even Biodynamic, 4th generation farmer (of sheep, pigs, and apricot, cherry and olive trees and grapes), Philippe practices “cosmoculture”. What kind of hippie-dippie baloney is that, you ask? So did we, and we are self-admittedly hippie-dippie. So, he follows not only the holistic farming practices and eschews all chemicals and additives, he’s goes a step further into biological energies. He says that by studying these energies, man can intervene to rebalance the elements, essentially creating a natural "immune system" for the farm/vineyard. In addition, Philippe's father built the winery on an ancient Roman site around an underground spring which they believe energizes the vineyards and the winery, and have obelisks dotted around the vineyards to transmit energy from the stars. I love this shit. And I really love this wine, called “MPN” for “Mon Pinot Noir” meaning “My Pinot Noir”, except it isn’t actually Pinot, it’s just done in the lighter style of Pinot. I know. But trust, this wine is awesome. Light, feminine, pretty, in a very understated way, and squeaky clean – like the quiet girl who isn’t demanding attention but gets it anyways because she is naturally beautiful and just so NICE. It’s soft red fruit, sour cherry with a little white pepper, no perceptible tannins or acid, just easy, joyful drinking.