Clot de l'Oum
Eddy & Arthur Bertrand – Bélesta, Roussillon
Grandchildren of farmers. The lure of the land drew Eddy & Arthur back to their childhood memories and love of farming life. Arthur, winemaker, apprenticed across France & N.Z.; Eddy, agricultural engineer. Complementary skills demanded in the modern vineyard.
The Bertrand family (including mum & dad, Brigitte & Jean-Marc) fell in love with Clot de l’Oum, the ‘torch’ passed on by predecessors Eric & Leia Monné who were searching for committed successors. Nature remains in kind hands.
The Bertrand’s bought remarkable winemaking raw materials: crazy ancient soil (Ordovician Period, 460 million years old!), up to 600m elevation, predominantly granite rock with pockets of gneiss, schist, and sandstone – an Eden of parcels & microclimates to explore grape flavours. Granite is rare in France, with world-famous Hermitage establishing its wine-making potential.
It took predecessors Eric & Lèia 20 years to detoxify the soils; Eddy & Arthur continue this organic practice, certified since 2,000. They both work for the same boss – nature – with minimal interference ensuring the terroir speaks through the flavour of the fruit.
Summers are baking hot in the Roussillon. But this specific terroir allows the farmer to balance freshness & minerality into the flavour of the grapes. Freshness from parcels at altitude with the cleansing Tramontane winds and, minerality from soil management that encourages deep roots to draw water infused with the rock’s mineral influence.
Eddy & Arthur farm indigenous grapes – ancient Carignan and Grenache, Llendoner Pelut, Macabeu, Mouvèdre and, Syrah imported from Rhone Valley – with biodynamic practices and biodiversity of plants encouraged in the vineyard.
Winemaking is light touch: hand harvest in small baskets, native yeasts, aging in fibreglass or old Rominée-Conti barrels, minimal sulphates.
Consistent organic farming over a long-period has produced a rare occurrence during phenolic maturity of the grapes – there is no inverse relationship between alcohol & acidity levels. I.E. in a Syrah parcel, you can harvest at 11’ alcohol with fantastic acidity and still have phenolic maturity. This is remarkable.
Under the watchful eye of The Canigou, the ‘torch’ of signature flavours continues – oodles of fruit, freshness, and minerality. Clot de l'Oum producing wines with such intense savouriness as either blended cuvées or specific parcel cuvées.
They exemplify the history and modernity of the Roussillon wine revolution.