DOMAINE DU PESQUIER
Domaine du Pesquier is a family owned wine estate for four generations, situated in the heart of the GIGONDAS appellation. The history of its vineyards goes as far backas 1556, when they belonged to the Princes of Orange. The actual estate has been created in the 1950s, producing olive oil as well. After the strong frosts of 1956, destroying almost all olive groves, Domaine du PESQUIER was restructured.
The vineyards and the wine became an important part of it, but it was only in 1971, when Gigondas obtained its proper AOC status, that wine became the leading product of the domaine. Raymond BOUTIERE started selling the first Cuvee of the domaine in 1965, still under a Côtes du Rhône Villages label; together with his son Guy, he’s the one who gives a real incentive for the development of the estate.
C u l t u r e
Reasoned farming is the philosophy of the domaine. Indeed, we are looking for the balance of the plants, while respecting nature and our terroirs. Our vines grow on soils of various compositions, but all of them belonging to the clay-limestone type. In Gigondas, our vineyards are spread over different terroirs:
10 ha on the terraces of GIGONDAS at 170 meters of altitude: Here the soils are of red clay, with gravels and stones at the surface (places called Les Pallieroudas and Les Terres). 4 ha of calcareous marl on the terroir of PESQUIER. 3 ha of terraces at 350 meters of altitude below the Dentelles de Montmirail, with alternating massive limestone, the Vaison limestone, marl, soils with pyritics fossils and top soils rich in scree. In Vacqueyras, we are situated on a terroir of marl and clay-limestone. Our Côtes du Rhône, vineyards are situated in SABLET, growing on argilo-calcareous soils. For the Vin de Pays, the soils consist of silts and marls and are of alluvial origin.
The main grape variety on our estate is Grenache noir, followed by Syrah and Mourvèdre. The average age of our vineyards is 40 years. Vines are trained according to short pruning of the cordon de Royat or Gobelet type. Works on growing vines, like disbudding or green harvest, but also selective sorting of grapes and good management of cover growth between the vines optimize ripeness. All these measures will lower yields, enhance ventilation of the vegetation, as well as maturation. Finally, the sorting of the harvest will improve the quality of the wines. We generally plough all our soils, but cover growth is maintained in certain plots to lower the vigour of the vines and enhance microbiological activity of the soils. Chemical weed killing is excluded and the soils are worked mecanically. Spraying has been lowered to the minimum, and only occurs if required regarding the weather forecast and development of plant diseases.
The optimum picking date is determined after many analysis of grapes ripeness and berries tastings. Harvest generally starts around the 15th of September, but this may vary according to the vintage. Berries tasting is the decisive factor that determines the beginning of harvest. Picking and sorting is done by hand, except for the Vin de Pays. Vinification is traditional, and will be adapted to harvest quality and grapes ripeness, considering the style of wine and the requirements of the AOP. Temperature control makes it possible for us to manage fermentations and to create well-structured and complex wines. After fermentation, the wines are tasted and blended before maturation in concrete tanks or large oak vats, according to their style and character.
|SOILS||Marl, red clay and limestone with gravels on the plateau of Gigondas (14 ha). Marl and limestone, rich in pyritic fossils (rocs and gravels), covered by scree on the slopes below the Dentelles de Gigondas (3 ha).|
|GRAPE VARIETIES||75 % Grenache, 20 % Syrah, 5 % Mourvèdre.|
|YIELD||35 hl / hectare.|
|PRODUCTION PROCESS||Hand picking and traditional vinification partly destemmed, depending on the ripeness of the stalks, slightly crushed, cold prefermentary maceration, 2 daily delestages (or rack and return), fermentation by natural yeasts and long term maceration (35 days).|
|12 months on fine lees in large oak vats (4 000 liters) for 80 % of the wine, while 20 % is aged on fine lees in concrete tanks.
The Wine advocate, Jeb Dunnuck, March 16: 90/100