Our domain in the middle of the saumur champigny appellation

Our domain in the middle of the saumur champigny appellation


Welcome to Domaine Fouet, located in the middle of the Saumur Champigny appellation and covering 20 hectares ! We are the 6th generation to run the business. With the help of our employees and seasonal workers, we do our best to combine modern methods and ancestral know-how in our daily work. A whole range of wines awaits you : our reds, our whites as well as our "Pét Nat" (a naturally sparkling wine which we will talk about later). In 2020, after 3 years of conversion, we obtained the organic certification.

And now, let's get to know each other a little better !

But first of all, let's summarise the work of the winemaker throughout the year in his vineyard !
Our starting point : the harvest. This is followed by simple Guyot pruning1 from December to March/April, removing the old wood (the old shoots, natural organic matter, will be crushed and will enrich the soil), pulling down (the fruit-bearing wood is tied along a wire with staples or biodegradable string), disbudding, tying up (the vine branches are fixed between 2 wires to keep them vertical and avoid random growth) and trimming.
And then the harvesting season is back !

And when you say harvest, you also say vinification, the other facet of the winegrower's job !
A brief revision !

To make red wine, several stages are necessary:
- stripping the grapes from the bunch
- pressing
1 Type of pruning where a horizontal rod is kept with 4 to 12 eyes.
- maceration so that the grape juice captures the colour and aromas of the skins
- fermentation
- racking (i.e taking the wine off the lees »
- malolactic fermentation (the malic acid in the wine is transformed into lactic acid. The wine becomes softer and more stable)
- filtering
- ageing
For a white wine, the process is slightly different :
- pressing
- settling (purification of the must)
- fermentation
- aeration of the wine
- ageing

What about "Pét Nat"? We use the ancestral method which consists of continuing the fermentation of a wine in the bottle : the bubbles must not be able to « escape » !

So you now know almost everything about our trade ! But here at the Domaine, what are our « little extras » ?

In organic viticulture, only copper and sulphur are authorised to treat the two main vineyard diseases : oidium and mildew. Other solutions are being considered such as the use of essential oils or UV rays, but this is still under consideration for the moment. And of course, working the soil is essential as no herbicides are allowed. Weeding is therefore mechanical, not forgetting the sheep (and a few hens), which are excellent allies in this job. This is the reason why we have moved into eco-pasturing. Animals allow us to regulate plant growth, to improve naturally the soil with their excrement and to increase biodiversity.

The latest innovation is agroforestry. This involves associating trees (here apple trees) with crops to develop greater biological diversity, create a micro-climate and enrich the soil with organic matter. And in a few years, we will also be able to serve you organic cider !
In the cellar and winery, in addition to the usual containers, you will find some that are a little more atypical, such as terracotta jars and Beaune Eggs (OEufs de Beaune), which are becoming increasingly popular with organic winegrowers.
Jars are used for red wines in order to preserve the purity of the wine without adding extra aromas. They also allow slow and uniform aeration.
As for the OEufs de Beaune, they are concrete ovoid vats that contribute to the micro-oxygenation of the wines without giving them a woody taste.
After reading this, you deserve a tasting!
Would you like to try the Rouge et Noire, the Clos de Midi for example, our sulphite-free2 wines, our P.M.G range? P.M.G, Pour Ma Gueule ! Yes, you read that right ! "Pour Ma Gueule" !3 In fact, traditionally, this is the (humorous) name given to the wine that the winemaker reserves for his personal consumption!

Come on, enough talk ! And let's drink !

*Collaborative work by students of ESTHUA (Faculty of Tourism, Culture and Hospitality Angers) - Dpt of Ecotourism

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