Domaine des Brosses was established in 1875 and lies 10 kilometres south of the town of Sancerre. The Girard family modernised the winery and vineyards when they bought the estate in 1973. Nicolas Girard has now taken over his father's 11 hectare estate and together with his brother Anthony, is making wines that are fresh, modern and aromatic. Both the brothers have travelled extensively throughout the wine world and have used the knowledge and experience acquired to underpin the style of their classic Sancerre.
The Girard family have six different parcels of Sancerre vineyards. Their hillside vineyards are located on classic clay and chalk soils, giving the grippy, mineral style expected of true Sancerre. Domaine des Brosses has used a machine harvester to collect the grapes since 1989. This is so that the Sauvignon Blanc is brought to the winery in the coolness of night-time, thus retaining the classic citrus and gooseberry aromas and flavours of Sancerre.
2017 marked the latest in a succession of early harvests. Despite heavy frosts in April, the warm weather returned from the end of May through June before a heatwave in July slowed vine growth with localised heavy storms impacting production and increasing the risk of rot in some areas. The variable weather continued through the rest of the growing season, despite some hot weather reducing acidity and encouraging sugar accumulation, cool nights preserved the aromatics. A return to normal conditions in September meant grapes were able to reach optimum ripeness prior to harvest and the result was healthy, good quality fruit.
Fermentation took place in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks to avoid oxidation. No oak was used, but the wine remained on its fine lees for several months to add weight to the palate and round the finish.
This Sancere is bright and pale golden in colour. It has a citrus nose with herbaceous notes of hay and nettle. Richly textured but with crisp acidity on the palate and textbook minerality. The finish is elegant with the typical purity and refreshment of excellent Sancerre.