Trained in architecture and fine arts respectively, Flemish couple Jean-Marie and Maines Guffens arrived in Burgundy in 1976 with little winemaking experience. However, the couple soon proved intuitive and talented winemakers, and by 1979 had purchased several small parcels in the hills of Pierreclos. Today, Domaine Guffens-Heynen includes just over 5 hectares in Pierreclos, Davaye, and Vergisson, where the tiny family estate is headquartered, as well as small parcels of Saint-Veran and Pouilly-Fuisse. The couple also operates the Verget negociant operation, which Jean-Marie Founded in 1990.
The winemaking at Domaine Guffens-Heynen is in the natural tradition, grapes are picked by hand, no chemicals are allowed in the vineyards. Compared to elsewhere in the Maconnais, the Chardonnays of Domaine Guffens-Heynen are more minerally, taut and classically made, requiring some time in bottle to unwind and flesh out. Also look for exotic, densely packed Pouilly-Fuissé.In the best years, Guffens will bottle grapes from the high-elevation Clos des Petits Croux separately, and label them as such.