We have been a family of winemakers for five generations growing Chenin on the great terroirs of Anjou. Since the end of the 19th century, we have been transmitting the love of the profession, the precision of gestures, listening to the vines, shaping our idea of wine and the desire to always build our know-how. We are part of a history that goes beyond us, that of a thousand-year-old vineyard, the cradle of Chenin.
Our vineyards are located in the heart of the Coteaux du Layon and in Savennières, on either side of the Loire. These singular landscapes, the original terroirs of The Chenin, have seen us live and grow. Every hillside, every place has its unique character. We love them like our mother earth, we admire them, we respect them. What a chance to live there! What a responsibility to cultivate them!
Present for more than a millennium on our hillsides, the Chenin is our companion, the interpreter of our terroirs and the noble material of our wines. This fascinating and demanding grape requires a lot of attention and care. Its humble nature expresses the identity of each plot, each hillside. On our soils, it is a grape variety of texture and mouth more than nose. It offers a lot of power, structure, vivacity and carries great bitterness. Its aromas are very fine and delicate with notes of white fruit, lime and honey.
•Chenin is a wonderfully versatile grape variety; capable of producing dry wines with great ageing and also exceptional sweet wines thanks to its magical interaction with botrytis. •In the heart of the Coteaux du Layon, our family first built its reputation with sweet wines through its know-how of meticulous selection of grapes in noble rot. •Today, we are widening our range of great terroirs by replanting slopes on the right bank of the Layon and the historic tracts of Savennières. In this way, we wish to explore all the facets of the Chenin by offering large dry plots and by continuing the history of sweet wines, treasures of Anjou.
Our region is a mosaic of hills. Stemming from the telluric forces of the formation of an old mountain, our geology is chaotic. Walking on our hillsides, we travel through completely different geological worlds. Schist, sandstone, pudding stone, volcanic rocks, aeolian sands cohabit over a few hundred meters, yet separated in time by hundreds of millions of years. Thus, the Layon is part of a geological fault that continues as far as the Pointe du Raz in Brittany. The Corniche Angevine, a rocky spur, separates the Coteaux du Layon from the Loire Valley. Further upstream, the slopes of Savennières plunge majestically down towards the Loire.
It is the plants that shape the landscape and create the terroir. They link the earth and the sky. Their leaves capture the light, the energy of the sky. Their roots create mother earth, this nourishing soil. Our scenery is beautiful because our plant life is diversified by trees, hedges, forests, meadows and vines forming a wine-growing landscape. The soil is our wealth. We must preserve it and pass it on from generation to generation.
Our terroirs are dry and arid. They are shallow and very stony soils. Rainfall is not very abundant. However, water surrounds us. The Loire is the mirror of our landscapes but also our opening to the world, our horizon. It is our resource. It soothes us. The Layon, which meanders at the foot of our hillsides, forms its morning mists in autumn. The Hyrôme, a small wild tributary of the Layon, used to drive our great-grandfather's water mill. The springs, which are very present in Savennières, give the hillsides an underground freshness.
our rocks are of mountain origin, our climate is that of the Ocean. West winds blow over our land. The old mills capture this invigorating energy. Clouds illuminate our sky, which reflects itself in the Loire. They bring refreshing little rains. At home, the light is white and soft. It is the softness of Angers.
Invisible, yet they are there. Bacteria and fungi form a microscopic but essential life. They shape the terroir. In symbiosis, the vine roots cultivate the fungi and bacteria to better nourish the soil and capture water and minerals. For our part, we cultivate the yeasts, the natural ferment that transforms the grapes into wine. At the end of the season, Botrytis cinerea is a fungus that forms a magical partnership with Chenin. It is the noble rot, which we harvest carefully to produce our great sweet wines. Like our vines, we are in symbiosis with all this life.
We cannot forget the animals: the sheep of our itinerant shepherd who graze our vines in winter, the cows of our farmer neighbour who provide us with the manure to prepare the biodynamic compost, the magnificent insects in the wild grasses, the shade of the buzzards hovering on our hillsides, the bats twirling in the half-light, the earthworms aerating our soils, the hares, starlings and roe deer sometimes too numerous who feast on our grapes.
In the midst of these unique places, our role is to accompany nature and listen to our vines. Pruning, working the soil, organic treatments, disbudding, leaf removal are all care that the vine requires precise gestures. Applications of biodynamic preparations and respect for rhythms allow us to cultivate our sensitivity and this relationship with the vine. Through our manual harvesting, we harvest at the best moment the grapes that have concentrated all the energy of the place. In the cellar, we interpret and transcribe our feeling of the place, guiding the wine gently so that it reveals its own personality.
We are craftsmen of vines and wine. We conduct a hillside viticulture, demanding and precise. Our vineyard is fully certified in organic viticulture. We develop biodynamic practices. All of our harvests are manual. We practice a hand-crafted and gentle winemaking with long ageing times. So many commitments to the service of our land.
A terroir is also women and men cultivating a know-how. Our job is to take care of the details, to pay daily attention to detail and to make precise gestures. A whole team is committed to our family. Our warmest thanks go to Marie-Renée Boussion, Romain Jos, Morgane Favory and Julien Merlet. Nothing would be possible without them. We also congratulate our various apprentices for their commitment to this relationship in the vineyard. We cannot forget our seasonal workers, disbudders and grape pickers.
A terroir is obviously a product in contact with the consumer. We would therefore like to thank our loyal customers, amateurs, wine merchants, sommeliers, restaurateurs, importers, agents, wine merchants, prescribers and journalists for their commitment to promoting our wines and restoring Anjou's reputation.