Richard Leroy! How to describe him? While we try to figure that out, you could just run out and buy the graphic novel, “The Initiates: A Comic Artist and a Wine Artisan Exchange Jobs”, and you’ll get a much quicker understanding of the man – and you can even drink one of his (alas, too scarce) bottles of Chenin while enjoying it! The book (in which winemaker Leroy swaps professions with comic artist Étienne Davodeau) was a literary success, to be guzzled post-haste, if one hasn’t already. In any event, let’s talk about him! Richard has been settled in Rablay-sur-Layon since 1996. A tiny estate of only 3 hectares which is entirely devoted to the Chenin grape. A garage wine! Two parcels, two cuvées: Les Rouliers from a 1 ha parcel and Noëls de Montbenault from 2 ha, everything cultivated biodynamically. This ex-banker started from nothing in terms of experience, but his curiosity and his desire to do well raised this passionate winemaker towards excellence. Richard is already part of a very select circle of truly exceptional Loire vignerons, and his bottles are becoming harder and harder to find – wine he’s decided to classify as Vin de France (or table wine) since 2008, the year of his divorce with the labelling authorities.