Nicolas Joly is a French winegrower in the Loire wine region, and one of the pioneers and leading personalities of the biodynamic wine movement.
At the time he took over the family estate, Joly was sceptical about modern agriculture and the effect it had on nature. He encountered a book on biodynamic farming and took an active interest in the ideas found there, and from 1980 started to experiment with them in his wine estate. From 1981, the estate’s top wine Clos de la Coulée de Serrant has been made biodynamically, and from 1984 the estate’s entire range has been produced biodynamically.
Coulée de Serrant is among the very few single vineyards monopole to be granted its own AOC; others include Romanée-Conti, La Tâche and Château-Grillet.
Joly has later written extensively on biodynamic wine production, and has served as an inspiration to many other wine producers who have converted to biodynamic practices.
His biodynamic convictions also means that Joly disapproves of the label “winemaker” to the extent that his business card is reported to read “Nicolas Joly, Gérant de la Société, Nature assistant and not a winemaker”.
The vines have an average age of 25 years and, of course, the vineyards are farmed biodynamically using only indigenous yeasts in the fermentation. Fermented and aged in neutral barrels, this wine evokes the classic beeswax and lychee nose of great Chenin. The mouth feel is more linear than the Vieux Clos with more aging time needed to open up to notes of quince, baked apple and some exotic citrus.