Savigny-les-Beaune 1er Cru – Serpentières
Aux Serpentières parcel is located in the heart of the south-facing 1er Cru slope on pure limestone-clay soil. Most of the 0.23 hectare of vines were planted by Jean-Baptiste’s great-grandfather Paul in 1924, making them an average of 90 years of age. The Lebreuil Serpentières is aged for 15 months in oak casks that are one third each new, and 1 and 2 year old. It is bottled in December after a light Kiselghur filtration and no fining. The ancient vines help to explain why the Serpentières is Lebreuil’s most concentrated and structured wine, with a core of ripe, sumptuous fruit. An average of 100 cases are made annually.
About the Producer
The Lebreuil family estate dates back to 1935, when present winemaker Jean-Baptiste Lebreuil’s grandparents purchased two hectares of vines. Pierre, Jean-Baptiste’s father, enlarged the property to seven hectares and acquired a bottling line to ensure that he would be able to bottle the majority of his production. After stages in Bordeaux and abroad, and a degree from the Lycée Viticole in Beaune, Jean-Baptiste joined his father in 1999. The domaine became officially known as Pierre and J-B Lebreuil in 2001 and was further enlarged to its present size of 9.5 hectares, all based around Savigny-les-Beaune.
Jean-Baptiste Lebreuil quickly made technical improvements in the cellars, installing new equipment to ensure perfect cellar hygiene (“primordial for the realization of great wines” he affirms). His aim is to produce vividly fruity Savigny-les-Beaune wines with great finesse and soft tannins. Vinification and aging follow classic Burgundian practice as it is understood by today’s quality-oriented winemakers. The Pinot Noir grapes are transported to the winery in small plastic crates to protect the integrity of the fruit. After a full de-stemming, the grapes are given a cold maceration at 8 degrees centigrade with daily pumping over, to bring out the color and fruit aromas. The alcoholic fermentation lasts about 10 days, and very little press-wine is used. The wines settle and clarify in the fermentation tanks and are then transferred to barrels for 12-16 months of maturation.
Farming practices: organic. Intense pruning to reduce the yields and ensure healthy fruit. Lebreuil uses no herbicides and plows the rows 5 times per year to remove grass and aerate the soils, so as to encourage the roots to grow deeper. If the crop is deemed too large, Lebreuil green harvests at the time of véraison. In short, all measures are taken to ensure the harvesting of the finest quality fruit. Biodynamic practices have been started since 2011.
Pierre et JB Lebreuil
Click here: Jean-Baptiste Lebreuil Speaks About His Bourgogne Rouge , April 4, 2020