La Grande Chatelaine, Cote de Beaune, Francois de Nicolay, Burgundy, France 2015
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Cult following – biodynamic – terroir driven wines
Francois de Nicolay
François de Nicolay, who manages Chandon de Briailles along with his sister Claude, started this tiny négociant project in 2000 with the aim of producing as pure an expression of Burgundy as possible. Having seen the benefits of biodynamic viticulture at his family Domaine, François only sources organic or biodynamic grapes from trusted friends amongst the best growers, who are sometimes famed producers themselves. The optimal quality of the grapes means he can create several cuvées without added sulphites; other cuvées experience an extremely low dose of sulphur as the only addition. François lets the terroir express itself with this minimal intervention, use of natural yeasts, and neutral barrels. The wines receive the utmost care: they do not undergo either pumping or filtration and they are hand bottled directly from the barrel.