Chinon Les Barnabés

2018
France
Loire

100% Cabernet Franc. Les Barnabés stands apart from Raffault's other main sites, Les Picasses and Les Peuilles, still in the Véron region but far to the west and downhill on a plain of alluvial soils near the Loire River. The sandy, gravelly site yields a lighter style of Cabernet Franc more approachable with less aging compared to the other two. LIkes Picasses and Peuilles, Barnabés comes from fruit which is organically farmed, harvested by hand, destemmed but not crushed, and fermented in tank with native yeasts. The fermentation is at cooler temperatures and the aging in tank only, all to preserve the freshness and brightness of the fruit. It is the earliest release of the three reds.   

93 points
"The 2018 Chinon “les Barnabés” from Domaine Olga Raffault is also raised entirely in stainless steel tank prior to bottling, and this single vineyard bottling is also made for earlier consumption, as befits its riverside vineyard planted on gravel and alluvial sands. The 2018 les Barnabés is also nicely cool at 12.5 percent alcohol and provides a more black fruity aromatic profile than the above, wafting from the glass in a youthfully complex blend of dark berries, cassis, tree bark, cigar ash, gravelly soil, smoke, a touch of spiced meats and a lovely topnote of juniper berries. On the palate the wine is pure, focused and full-bodied, with a fine core, excellent mineral drive and grip, suave, fine-grained tannins and a very long, vibrant and complex finish. While there is a bit of buried tannin here, this wine is already drinking with generosity and is very tasty, though it will easily last in the cellar thirty years or more! This is fine, fine juice. 2021-2050+. "
John Gilman,
View From The Cellar
, May-June 2021
92 points
"From the commune of Savigny-en-Véron, the 2018 Chinon Les Barnabés is sourced from the alluvial soils of the Loire and the gravels from the Vienne. The wine opens pure, clear and fresh, but it's also deep and concentrated, with spicy notes of ripe cherries, black berries, raspberries and violets. Medium to full-bodied on the palate, this is an intense, dense, round and fruity Chinon with a sweet and remarkably long and soft but elegant and refined finish. The tannins are remarkably fine, and the charming licorice sweetness is reminiscent of fine and elegant wines from the Languedoc or even Southern Rhône. 12.5% alcohol. Tasted in April 2021."
Stephan Reinhardt,
Wine Advocate
, August 2021
90 points
"Nose full of purple flowers and licorice. Cool black fruit, lots of black pepper and graphite throughout. Good structure and balance, streaky tannins, and an intensity on the finish. Aged only in stainless steel."
Jason Wilson,
Vinous Media
, July 2020

SKU/Code: 
DB0605-18
Product Line: 
Wine
Red
Varietal: 
Cabernet Franc
Farming Type: 
Organic