Domaine de Bellivière

France

Making biodynamic wines in the northernmost vineyards of the Loire requires determination, passionate commitment, and a cool temperament, as mother nature regularly brings frost, mildew, oidium, and hail. Losses in Jasnières and Coteaux-du-Loir, where harvests often take place during October, average 50% and even more in recent vintages like 2012, 13, 14 and 16. And although the Nicolas family’s Domaine de Bellivière has 18ha planted (with 75% chenin and 25% pineau d’aunis scattered over more than 70 parcels), Eric and his wife Christine never get to harvest the full surface. The couple started by renting 3.5ha in 1994 and lost everything to frost. The following year, they lost the vineyard altogether because the owner decided to take it back for himself. If it wasn't for the help of the late Louis Derré, their generous and kind-hearted neighbour, the domaine would probably not exist today. Louis was a retired vigneron at the time and he graciously introduced them to all his friends, many of whom happily leased their vines out. They gradually increased their holdings over the years, and in December 2015 were joined by their son Clément.

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