The right soils for great wines
On leaving Mount Brouilly and heading down the valley, you come to vineyards in a partial circular shape. In this granite basin they are perfectly placed at 328 metres altitude, located at mid-point on the slopes and facing south-south east. The Château is centrally positioned in the vineyards.
The shallow soil is poor, sandy, acid and contains rock debris – reminding us of the underlying bedrock. While it is friable on the surface, the deeper subsoil is compact containing quantities of crystalline rock (gneiss, diorite, granite or schist). As the schist slowly breaks down it liberates mineral elements such as iron, potassium and manganese thus giving the wine its special character.
Closer to the vines
To safeguard the soil ecosystem, essential to the equilibrium of the vines, we practice grassing-over of the rows in a limited fashion. This avoids erosion while the presence of insects improves biodiversity and reinforces the natural defence of the vines.
Furthermore, decomposition of the granite to form ochre-hued friable rock allows good rainwater drainage.
Pruning in the goblet-style is gradually being replaced by “Cordon de Royat” pruning along with trellising to give better leaf exposure to the sun, better ripening and a better crop health.
Gamay, the Beaujolais identity
Gamay is the only grape variety used in the Brouilly Appellation. It is perfectly adapted to our terroir and positively thrives on the acid, granite soils. The estate is also fortunate to have old vines – some of which are more than 80 years old – such vines have been cultivated in Beaujolais for centuries. This happy combination results in rich and concentrated wines with an average yield of 38 hl/ha (about 2,000 bottles /acre).