A small co-operative with some 1000 hectares. They have invested heavily in quality development in recent years and now work closely together with the individual growers. Stephan Clement, the winemaker, comes from Champagne and finds it quite natural that things work very differently here. He has introduced pigeage in 18 of the fermentation tanks. this ‘pushing down the cap’ (pushing down skins and pips that float to the surface into the must during fermentation) gives increased extraction, more than remontage (pumping over). It is much more common in e.g. Burgundy than in this region. The white Duc de Berticot 2003 has been aged for 9 months in oak barrels; it has a good balance, some citrus-sweet aromas on the nose and lots of vitality. The red Défendu (=the forbidden) 2005 is made from old vines, primarily merlot, is fruity, quite full-bodied and very nice (9 euro).
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