While walking along the river Vienne, you pass by vines which François Rabelais mentioned in his writings. In the heart of this region of the Loire, is the small village of Cravant-les-Coteaux, home to domain Philippe Alliet.
Having inherited the domain from his grandfather in 1978, Philippe Alliet and his wife Claude cultivate 17 hectares of vines with ever-growing rigor. It was after a decade of hard work that their efforts were rewarded: the wines are characterised by their innovative style, denser and darker than those of their neighbours.
Philippe Alliet is renowned for his talent both in vinifications and wine-tasting. Motivated by his desire for excellence, he takes meticulous care of his Cabernet Franc (known as Bretons in the area) and his Chenin. After having progressively reduced the chemical treatments used on the domain, he has definitively banned all herbicides and fertilisers. His (tilled) soils are now healthy. The vines are severely pruned and the grapes harvested by hand, offering low yields of outstanding quality. The plants benefit from perfect conditions: they grow on soils of clay, limestone, and silica, situated on south-facing slopes.
His son Pierre, who joined the team in 2005, helps his parents in producing wines with elegance and depth, thanks to gentle, finely-tuned élevages. Until 2010, élevage took place in Bordeaux barrels. Nowadays, they prefer to use larger barrels, and have therefore replaced the 225-litre barrels with 500-litre casks. The wines are thus less marked by woody notes.
After a maturing period of 11 to 20 months, it’s time to taste these cuvées which are produced only in low quantities. Thanks to the diversity of these terroirs, the Alliet family offers a varied and sophisticated range of wines which are equally stunning in both youth and after some years in the cellar. Their tannic structure and delicacy allows for pairings with flavourful foods.
Wines from Philippe Alliet currently for sale
This cuvée is raised for 18 months in casks then in vats. This dense, sweet wine has wonderful roundness on the palate and is delicious at any age, both in youth and after 10 years of cellaring.
Domain Philippe Alliet’s Chinon produced on the ‘coteau de Noiré’ hillside is quite simply exquisite. Silky and delicate tannins with a lovely length. As the vine grows on south-facing hills, in sunny years, the wine is dark with candied notes whilst maintaining a stunning freshness.
What the reviews say about domain Philippe Alliet
Revue du Vin de France 2*/3
“The modest Claude and Philippe Alliet have made a name for themselves in creating a new style in Chinon in the 1990s. The cuvées Vieilles Vignes, L’Huisserie and Coteau de Noiré have seduced lovers of Cabernet Franc with their dark colour and incredible density. But no recipe has been established by this master-taster and vinifier, who has been helped by his son Pierre since 2005. The 2016 wines are extremely refined and concentrated; they are amongst the finest wines in the region.
The wines: Chinon 2017 is already suave and accessible. The 2016 is a great vintage for Cabernet Franc, and the Vieilles Vignes cuvée has incredible delicacy; its vigorous length is aligned by refined tannins. The wines from this domain have never been so good.”
Bettane+Desseauve 2019: 3*/5
“This is one of the references of Chinon, with 17 hectares owned by the Alliet family, devoted to producing the finest possible Cabernet Franc. Claude, Philippe and their son Pierre represent one of the Loire’s most famous trios.”