Tasted with Audrey Braccini, in Fuissé, 02 November 2020.
Domaine Ferret has existed in Fuissé since 1840 – thanks to Jean-Alfred Ferret, a teacher, and his son Antoine, a dentist by trade – as were some of the following generations too. Actually, the Ferret’s are known to have been making wine locally since the 1760s…
Until being bought – with quite some competition at the time – by Louis Jadot in 2008 (first vintage in 2009), for much of the history of the property it has been run by women. First, came Jeanne Ferret in the 1930s, who began, in 1942, domaine bottling long before many other estates locally and who vinified her wines based on her own classification of parcels which is still used today: ‘Tête de Cru‘ and ‘Hors Classe‘ etcetera. Jeanne ran the domaine until her death in 1993. Jeanne’s daughter, Colette, followed her but couldn’t bring quite the same kind of energy to the domaine as her mother had done, so eventually the domaine went up for sale.
As, perhaps, a nod to the history of the domaine, Audrey Braccini, was installed by Louis Jadot to manage the propety and make the wines – it seems their choice has been vindicated. Audrey decided that this 17 hectare domaine (with an additional parcel from Jadot) should become organic and is even taking the next stept to biodynamics. In the newish cuverie, they have taken advantage of a 4m height difference from top to bottom so that grape juice/must can fall directly by gravity into tanks where they start their fermentations and then again on level lower into the waiting barrels – a little less new oak is used than in recent years, but with a longer period of elevage.
Audrey on 2019:
“We trembled, but no frost came. We had a good start to the growth but people forget that May was rather cold – the grapes often ended up quite small – one vineyard ended up with clusters of only 45-50 grams in weight. The taste today is for freshness, but you have to harvest chardonnay ripe though – it’s finding the balance that asks lots of questions. We started our harvest 10 September – we couldn’t have gone earlier despite nice acidity because the skins were still hard. Historically, this a low volume vintage – averaging 30 hl/ha – we have concentration and richness but with a good acidity. Probably the first bottlings will come in January, the last in February.”
Despite most of samples being far from bright, this was a great tastring – or put another way, a tasting of great wines – you can hardly go wrong!
2019 Pouilly-Fuissé Autour de La Roche
Vines in Vergisson – 12 different parcels – the only wine with no barrel elevage.
A big, punchy, bright nose. Mouth-filling, nice shape – a little bit of attractive structure. Growing wider, growing more intense – zesty finishing – and really long too – ooh that will be super!
From the commune of Fuissé – 32 different parcels – some with tank elevage but mainly in barrel.
A much calmer nose, some width, sweetness of barrel – but not too much. A calmer entry too, but more overtly mineral and growing in intensity at the base here. Wide, mouth-watering, almost layered flavour in the finish. Wide finishing…
Close to the church, east-facing almost 0.64 ha
Also a modest volume of aroma, but here with a suggestion of floral perfume too. Ooh – now that’s beautiful over the palate – silky, mineral – wide, cool-fruit. Yes! A lovely intensity to the finish – driving that zesty flavour forward… This is my new favourite!
2019 Pouilly-Fuissé Le Clos des Prouges Tête de Cru
The first vineyard bought in Pouilly by Louis Jadot in 2005. Originally vinified at the Chateau des Jacques. 2 ha
Another relatively compact nose today – but with the impression of silken texture. A little more emphasis on power here – not overt weight but there’s a growing intensity of flavour – mineral/agrume finishing. The similar finishing zesty bitters…
Boudot is the proper climat and will be a 1er cru. East, south-east-facing
A few more higher tones here – and what higher tones – this has an extra elegance to the aromatic. Wide, lovely intensity again and a nicely energetic, almost dynamic, style. Intense finishing with the citrus skin again. Bravo!
A mix of soil types in the vines here – plain east facing 0.8 ha – the first of these samples that’s almost bright. This was the ultimate wine for Madame Ferret – they could sell the rest of the domaine but not the Ménétrières
Not effusive but there’s a width of aroma here, at first a suggestion of faint reduction. Ooh – wide, ultra-mineral and mouth-watering – so silky. Juicy flavour in the finish – to be great…
Vers Pouilly the real climat name
Compact but with a super purity of lemon fruit – ripe but not too much – a subtle florality starting to show itself with air. Wide – so wide – mouth-filling, growing with intensity too. Just a little more structural and intense finish – great wine too – but be patient!