If you make a visit to the tiny village of Savennières, you will find vineyards steeped in tradition and family heritage. You will also find vigneron Damien Laureau who has nothing to do with this. In 2008 Damien moved his attention from Anjou to Savennières and began by renting some small plots. A soil analysis confirmed suspicions of great soil diversity across these little plots. The 80m plot of Les Genêts for example, now has two halves - the first has a higher concentration of sand and large clusters of schist, which he uses to make ‘Les Genêts’. These soils form a wine that is friendly and soft when drunk young. The second half of the plot has a higher concentration of clay and stones, Damien uses the vines here for his 'Bel Ouvrage' which can take several years to reach its full potential. Damien uses plant-based sprays to ward off rot and diseases on the vines and generally keeps yields low at 35l/h compared to an average of 50l/h elsewhere in Savennières. He also harvests later than others, just when the grapes are turning yellow, rather than the traditional green. Unlike many wines from Savennieres, Laureau’s wines are approachable when they are young, with signs of fruit alongside the mineral elements from the schist.