Brothers Luc and Denis Lattard inherited their family's farm in the central Rhone back in the 90s. Although the Rhone is a region famous for wines the farm was devoted to alfalfa and grain for livestock; vines had once been planted but not since Phylloxera back in the mid 1800s. The brothers, however, are wine enthusiasts, so in 1995 they started planting vines on several south east facing hill side locations. Today they have nearly 14 acres planted to Syrah, Gamay, Roussanne, and Viognier.
The brothers Lattard adhere to very natural principles in farming: the vineyards are certified organic and all the vineyard work is done by hand. They use no additives in the wine making process: so no accidification, sugaring, or coloring. Since 2007 they have even stopped using sulfur.
Aroma: As you expect and want from Gamay the brothers Lattard's wine is bright and vibrant smelling. There's lots of raspberry and cherry aromas with a bit of cranberry and a bit of spruce needle. Fresh ripe red berries that are so juicy and ripe they're just about to burst is how it seems. The Lattard's gamay isn't a one trick pony though, there are some savory aromas and I get a whiff of roasted chestnuts.
Taste: bright fresh acidity up front, but then riper fruit and lusher texture. There's a wild and slightly furry undertone. The Lattard Gamay is compelling and crisp, zippy and snappy with lots of fresh berry fruit, but also a black peppery spice woven in. This is a very well integrated totally natural zero sulfur wine that's very approachable and not too tannic.
If you want a wine that tastes like it is vibrantly alive give this a shot. The brothers Lattard's Gamay is very pretty and a great intro to natural wines. This is about $15 at Rosemont Munjoy Hill, Rosemont on Brighton, The Farm Stand in South Portland, Flock and Vine in Cape Elizabeth, and the Blue Hill Wine Shop.