Francois de Nicolay
VISIT IMPORTER'S WEBSITE
Country of Origin: France
Location: Savigny-les-Beaune, France
People: Francois de Nicolay, Owner & Winemaker
Viticulture: Certified Biodynamic
from our friends at Zev Rovine Selections:
Domaine Chandon de Briailles has been in the family since 1834. Initially there were only the Savigny-lès-Beaune and Pernand-Verglesses vineyards. Coming from two mono-varietals (Pinot Noir and Chardonnay) our wines strongly express all the authenticity of their terroir. Our Grands Crus are cultivated in the traditional method with the use of our own plough horses that unpack and give oxygen to the soils. This allows the sub-soil micro-life beneath to help feed and give nutrients to our vines.
Our philosophy is a holistic respect for life that translates to balanced, healthy grapes with the capacity to produce vibrant, pure and seductive wines, so in 2005 we completely converted to biodynamic farming. We applied for certification with EcoCert and Demeter, which we received in 2011. The longer we continue farming in this way, we can see the difference in the vines. They grow differently; they seem more alive and healthy, and at harvest they are better balanced between acidity and aromas.
We wanted to expand the effort beyond Chandon de Briailles, so came to be the Maison de Nicolay project. We purchase whole grapes and un-fermented grape juice from neighboring vineyards who are certified biodynamic or in the process. After inspecting the grapes during veraison and harvest, we make a selection that can support elevage without added sulphur or yeasts- wines from pure grape must. The grapes ferment and mature in our Savigny Les Beaune cellar (a very old cave), without pumpover, filtration, or sulfur and are bottled by hand via the “chevre a deux becs” method. In this way we are able to preserve the wine’s freshness and allow the terroir to express itself clearly.