Sancerre – Cuvée Prestige
100% Sauvignon blanc. Only made in best years, this wine comes from the three best and most renowned terroirs of Bué: Grand Chemarin, Chêne Marchand and La Paquerette. These old-vines vineyards (60+ years) all share a southern exposure. The grapes are hand-picked and sorted in the vineyard. Because of the very low yields of these vines (40 hectoliters per hectare), the grapes are very ripe (between 3 and 5 bunches per root).
After whole-cluster pressing and cold-settling, the alcoholic fermentation starts with natural yeasts, very slowly. The goal is to preserve the maximum expression of fruit and terroir. A part of the juice, 80%, remains in tanks and the other 20% is raised for 4 to 6 months in 400 liter barrels (50% new oak and 50% one year old barrels, medium toast from Allier wood). The lees are worked regularly (bâtonnage every week at the beginning for the barrels, every 2 weeks for the tanks) in order to bring out more fruit and fat during the aging process. Before bottling these two parts are blended. Fined and filtered. About 3000 bottles produced.
This refined white wine is pale gold in color and displays delicate white peach and floral aromas, with a rich, full mouthfeel and long finish. Enjoy it now, or hold it as it will continue to develop and age for the next 6 to 8 years.
About the Producer
The Picard family has been making wines in Sancerre since the 1600s. Today they produce 8,350 cases between two cuvées of white, two cuvées of red and their rose. Mickael Picard is in charge of the domaine since 2004.
The wines produced by this small, 14 hectare domaine (spread over 45 different parcels) are proof that not all Sancerres are created equal. As Sancerre is a large appellation, the best villages have developed their own reputation for quality, with Bué considered one of the finest. The vineyard slopes surrounding this hamlet have outstanding clay-limestone soils, sunny southwestern exposures and ideal elevations which Mickael farms sustainably (culture raisonnée). The grapes are always hand-harvested (while 90% of the producers in Sancerre harvest mechanically) and the Sancerre Blanc is produced from the very select Grand Chemarin and Chêne Marchand vineyards. Superb terroir and limited production translate into very generous and gratifying wines.
Farming/vinification practices: sustainable. Grass is allowed to partially grow in the vineyards. The wines are vegan - the whites and rosés are fined with bentonite while the reds are unfined.
Jean-Paul Picard & Fils