Domaine de Rocheville
Domaine de Rocheville is a relatively new estate in the Saumur-Champigny appellation that was founded in 2004 by Philippe Porche to fulfill his dream of creating expressive and environmentally conscious wines. The estate is certified as organic and has spectacular hilltop vineyards in Parnay, which is about five miles east of Saumur. The location is particularly beneficial for high quality viticulture as the weather is moderated by the cooling winds from the Loire River which is about one-half mile to the north and protection from the Fontevraud forest to the southeast.
The vineyards are on the Parnay plateau above the river and there is a perfect geological mix of clay and limestone in the vineyards. The limestone in the area is also a fine grained limestone known as tuffeau, or tufa, that also contains mica. The sandy and porous characteristics of the tufa has the benefits of being well draining to to save vines from water stress during periods of too much rain but being able to retain moisture at its base for vine roots to find in dry periods.
The tufa soils also result in very expressive aromatics for Cabernet Franc along providing a moderating influence to what can also be high levels of tannins. The balance of aromatics, full rich fruit, and harmonious tannins results in really elegant red wines from the Domaine's vineyards. The clay and limestone in the area can also produce elegant and expressive Chenin Blanc that is labeled as Saumur Blanc.
Supporting and adding to the quality and character of the Domaine's wines is meticulous vineyard management. Overall the estate is organically certified but the meticulous approach extends to carefully planned cover crops, manual pruning for limiting yields, precise leaf canopy management for protecting clusters, and careful manual harvesting. The overall health of the vineyards is protected by encouraging a balance of flora and fauna within the estate including cultivating beneficial varieties of insects. The expressive and high quality fruit each year is then carefully vinified according to characteristics of each parcel and that year's harvest and always with as little intervention as possible.
Vineyards looking north towards the Loire
Vineyards looking south towards the village
Some lovely looking Chenin Blanc
Robust looking Cab Franc
Philippe is very proud of his wines
and of his vineyards!
Saumur Blanc "La Jouvencelle" 2021 (Chenin Blanc) (OC, NF)
Aromas include white flowers, citrus blossoms, honeysuckle, honeydew melon, white grapefruit, and kiwi. Flavors include honeydew melon, white grapefruit, green and yellow apples, and interesting hints of salinity. There is a medium body, perfect balance and acidity, and a refreshing and lingering finish.
Food pairings would include shrimp, sole, halibut, calamari, clams, seafood salads, veal and pork cutlets, baked chicken, Asian pork, chicken, noodle, and vegetable dishes, creamy Mexican food, chile verde, mild yellow curries, green salads, and mild to medium cheeses.
Saumur-Champigny Rouge "Le Page" 2020 (Cabernet Franc) (OC, NF)
This is 100% Cabernet Franc and aromas include dark cherries, blackberries, boysenberries, nectarines, and red peaches. Flavors include dark cherries, blackberries, and boysenberries. There is an elegant medium body with a sense of “freshness”, perfect balance and acidity, and a lush, rich, full finish.
Food pairings would include New York Steak, Rib Eye, short ribs, beef stew, veal chops, veal stew, pork chops and roast pork, BBQ ribs, rack of lamb, grilled and roast chicken, duck confit, cassoulet, grilled sausages, salmon, tuna, clams, mussels, paella, jambon iberico, Asian beef, pork, and chicken dishes, lamb curries, Mexican beef and pork dishes, chile verde, charcuterie, and mild, medium, blue, and creamy cheeses.
Saumur-Champigny Rouge "Le Roi" 2015 (Cabernet Franc) (OC, NF)
Aromas include dark cherries, blackberries, boysenberries, and rich dark chocolate. Flavors include blackberries, boysenberries, blueberries, and hints of ripe red fruits. There is an elegant medium to full body, perfect balance and acidity, and a lush, rich, full finish.
Food pairings would include Filet Mignon, New York Steak, short ribs, beef stew, veal chops, rack of lamb, pork chops, duck, grilled chicken, salmon, shrimp, clams, Asian and Mexican beef, pork, and chicken dishes, lamb curries, charcuterie, and mild to medium cheeses.