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August 30, 2013
Domaine Ferret Helps INAO Project to Designate Pouilly-Fuissé Vineyards Premier Crus, in Wine & Spirits
Domaine Ferret is assisting the INAO's (Institut National de l’Origine et de la Qualité) project to designate up to 14 Pouilly-Fuissé vineyards Premier Crus by 2014, as reported in a recent Wine & Spirits feature. Audrey Braccini, winemaker of Domaine Ferret, joined the steering committee, noting that it took several years of cajoling while the committee continued to survey plots, document winemaking practices, soils and subsoils, and conduct tastings of the different climats over a range of vintages. “Some [local producers] were initially hostile to actual recognition of premier crus,” explained Audrey. Nominated climats include vineyards in Solutré-Pouilly, Fuissé, Vergisson and Chaintré. These were selected mostly on historical reputation dating back before World War II and the establishment of Burgundy's appellation system in the 1930s. Domaine Ferret has vineyards in Fuissé and Vergisson.
Burgundy’s grand cru vineyards were officially recognized in the late 1930s, a time when there was no classification of premier cru wines. Despite this, several white wine vineyards in the Côte d’Or and the Mâconnais were permitted to list their names on their labels in addition to the local village name since they had been historically recognized as crus. In the Mâconnais, only Pouilly-Fuissé wines were given this status.
The INAO’s project is far from trivial. Across the entire region of Burgundy, Pouilly-Fuissé has among the most complex soil types. Domaine Ferret’s decades of experience in identifying Pouilly-Fuissé’s best terroirs for its top Tête de Cru and Hors-Classe wines makes it uniquely suited to assist the INAO’s process of identifying and naming Premier Cru appellations. After World War II, Domaine Ferret was the first domaine in Pouilly-Fuissé to move from bulk wine production to bottling on the estate. The domaine’s decades-long focus on vinifying each parcel of vines separately—a common practice in the Côte d’Or—has greatly facilitated the identification of the appellation’s top terroirs.