Arnaud Lambert

The Story

In 1996, Yves Lambert and his son, Arnaud, started a winery in the Yves’ native French countryside, Saumur.  Sadly, Yves unexpectedly passed away in 2011, but left their domaine, St.-Just, in the very capable hands of his son. Equip with a degree in enology and viticulture, Arnaud was involved in the winemaking and viticulture since the start of their family venture and was ready for the challenge. Since the passing of his father, Arnaud has taken the wines to new heights that Yves may not have even dreamt of.

In 2009, the decision was made to convert from sustainable farming to organic (which they are now completely certified) with their eyes set on eventually incorporating biodynamic principals to both the cellar and the vineyards. Time spent with Arnaud reveals a deeply introspective and humble winemaker; it’s hard for him to elect a single compliment to one of his own wines. Very “matter-of-fact” about what he has experienced in shaping his practice, Arnaud maintains refreshing openness and humility, despite gifting the world such honest, soulful wines.

The entry-level and mid-range wines are vinified and raised in stainless steel tanks, while the high-end cuvées are generally raised in older oak barrels. Both methods helps preserve the tension and freshness of the Chenin Blanc and Cabernet Franc. In a sea of “less than hygienic” wines made in the Loire Valley under the guise of biodynamics or the “natural” wine movement, these wines are refreshingly clean, pure expressions of two of the most exciting and distinctive varietals in the world.

Lay of the Land

The vineyard areas of Saumur and Saumur-Champigny are small islands of limestone chalk hills surrounded by fields of river alluvium. The general advantage that Saumur-Champigny has over the surrounding Saumur appellation is that they are higher elevations with good drainage whereas the larger area of Saumur sits mostly on flat areas with a mix of soils. That said, there are a few exceptions to that in Saumur, like the hill of Brézé and a few other notable limestone outcrops that create dynamic and deeply profound wines.

Domaine de St. Just’s vineyards are planted on sandstone, clay and limestone soils on the once famous white wine hill called, Saint-Cyr-en-Bourg. The limestone bedrock not too deep below the clay and sand help to create tension-filled expressions of Chenin Blanc and Cabernet Franc.

Yves Lambert

Arnaud Lambert - 2016 Saumur-Champigny Rouge

Price: $21.00
Size: 750ml
Availability:

Out of stock

Type of Wine: Red
Style: Mineral, Elegant and Aromatic

The Wine

Inside the bottle: The entry-level Saumur-Champigny from Arnaud Lambert delivers well beyond its price range. This organically-made wine is vinified in only stainless steel and with a natural, spontaneous fermentation. The resulting wine has extremely intense, focussed red fruits, flowers and black earth. In the mouth, the refreshing acidity complements the smooth tannins, making this wine beautifully balanced and pure. Thankfully, it is a Loire Valley Cabernet Franc that is void of some of the pitfalls of this region, like barnyard funk. This wine is one of the greatest examples in the region to get a true impression of its terroir without too much handling by the producer. It's raw and honest wine at its best.

Terroir: The landscape for this wine principally sits on and next to the hill, Saint-Cyr-en-Bourg, a hill with a history of great white wine as well as red. The underbelly of some portions of the area a loaded with tuffeau limestones, while others take on a more alluvium from the thousands of years of flooding by Loire River's tributaries. The principal topsoil here is very sandy, which lends itself to a more fine, high-spirited wine.

About The Wine

Inside the bottle: The entry-level Saumur-Champigny from Arnaud Lambert delivers well beyond its price range. This organically-made wine is vinified in only stainless steel and with a natural, spontaneous fermentation. The resulting wine has extremely intense, focussed red fruits, flowers and black earth. In the mouth, the refreshing acidity complements the smooth tannins, making this wine beautifully balanced and pure. Thankfully, it is a Loire Valley Cabernet Franc that is void of some of the pitfalls of this region, like barnyard funk. This wine is one of the greatest examples in the region to get a true impression of its terroir without too much handling by the producer. It’s raw and honest wine at its best.

Terroir: The landscape for this wine principally sits on and next to the hill, Saint-Cyr-en-Bourg, a hill with a history of great white wine as well as red. The underbelly of some portions of the area a loaded with tuffeau limestones, while others take on a more alluvium from the thousands of years of flooding by Loire River’s tributaries. The principal topsoil here is very sandy, which lends itself to a more fine, high-spirited wine.