It was Lucien Crochet's marriage to the daughter of Lucien Picard, and the subsequent fusion of the domaines of Lucien Picard and André Crochet (father of Lucien), that created the Domaine Lucien Crochet. Monsieur Picard was one of the very first growers in the Sancerre district to begin bottling his wines and selling them primarily to restaurants in Paris. Lucien Crochet expanded the work of his father-in-law and, over a thirty-year period, also expanded the domaine so that it now encompasses 38 hectares of vineyards.
29 hectares are planted to Sauvignon Blanc and the remaining 9 hectares are planted to Pinot Noir. The soils are clay and limestone from the Oxfordian and Kimmeridgian eras. The vineyards are on slopes of varying severity and run from south-east to south to southwest in their exposure to the sun. The vineyards are located around the towns of Bué, Sancerre and Crézancy, the finest of which is the south-facing limestone-based Chêne Marchand vineyard.
Since 1989, only organic supplements have been used in the vineyards which are planted to a density of between 6600 (older plantings) to 8700 vines per hectare. 60% of the estate’s vineyards have grass growing between the rows with the soil being worked (hoed and ploughed) just at the base of the vines, while 25% of the vineyards are fully ploughed and hoed. The harvest is manual, and the soil is worked immediately around the vine but the growth in the rows between the vines remains throughout the growing season. The domaine practices organic viticulture but is not certified as such.
Bon Viveur Gilles Crochet, son of Lucien, now looks after winemaking duties at this estate. The winery is ultra-modern, fitted out with the very latest, temperature-controlled fermentation vessels. The emphasis is on creating wines of finesse and complexity that are faithful both to terroir and vintage. Gilles makes his wines as naturally as possible using indigenous yeasts and through hand picking, careful selection of the grapes and long, slow ageing sur lie, producing taut, sophisticated and ageworthy/ageable Sancerre.
For more detail on this superb Sancerre, click on the blue link below for a data sheet/fiche technique from Crochet themselves.
Lucien Crochet, Les Calcaires Sancerre 2017 - fiche technique
Sauvignon Blanc 100%.
The wine is characterised by layer after layer of intense, concentrated fruit, more finesse and class than the regular cuvée, greater complexity, full-flavoured honeydew melon, peach, white flower, citrus rind and mineral flavours with a buttery texture, finishing long true and dry.
ABV = 13.0%.