The vineyards of Savoie run north-south along the Rhône as it flows from Lake Geneva, before parting ways at Lake Bourget – the river westwards as it follows its glacial ancestor’s path, and the vineyards towards the southeast as they cling to the southern ridges of the Massif Bauges. The soils evolve continually, from gravel and molasse north and east of Lake Bourget (scooped out and deposited over time), through the Kimmeridigian chalk screes on the Mont du Chat, to the cappucino swirls of marl and dark limestone of the Cluse de Chambéry.
The native white grapes are Jacquere, Roussanne and Altesse (sometimes locally referred to as Roussette). Jacquere produces delicately perfumed and poised wines, to be enjoyed in any season – in winter, with raclette next to the fire, in summer, outdoors on a terrace with simply cooked fish. Roussanne, for us, reaches its greatest heights in Chignin, where the exotic fruit and generous texture are exquisitely supported by Alpine acidity. In the right hands, Altesse is a noble wine, to be enjoyed after at least a decade of aging. Similarly, the local red grape Mondeuse requires considerable cellar time to come round, and is just as majestic as its grandchild Syrah.
We are very privileged to be able to work with the fifth generation of Dupasquiers (David and Véro) to work the western slopes of the Lake Bourget, the magician of Mondeuse, Michel Grisard, and the wonderful couple of Gilles and Christine Berlioz in Chignin.