Here’s the real story – far too strange to be fiction. Vincent’s Father – like all the grape farmers of the small village of Thesee-La-Romaine, did as they had always done. They tried to get as much fruit as possible out of their vines to take down the village cooperative where all the grapes were sold by the kilo.
But young Vincent had a different idea. Having just returned home from a fresh stint at one of the top wineries of Chinon, Ricard knew two things. First – that the flint-rich soil had the potential to craft world-class Sauvignon Blanc and second – that the only way to do that was to drastically change the way they were farming.
So that first year Vincent took 10% of the vineyard – and as the old men of the village watched and laughed – Vincent went through the vines by hand, cutting vines and dropping fruit ($$$) right on to the ground. He bottled it under the family name in lieu of taking it down to the village cooperative. It was all fun and games until the wine was finally finished and the old men finally got to taste the wine.
It was clear that the wine was sublime and completely out of this world – easily competing with the wines of Sancerre. So the old men sprang to action and they sued Vincent for making wine ‘too good’ or out of type for the region.
Vincent’s a way better guy than I am. He eventually won his case and instead of running the other family’s out of business, he took over the village cooperative and taught the entire village how to grow for quality instead of quantity. This is easily one of the best white wine values in the world.