About Domaine du Vissoux/Pierre-Marie Chermette
From a hamlet called 'Le Vissoux' in the southern Beaujolais commune of Saint Verand, Pierre-Marie and Martine Chermette make some of the most natural and wild Beaujolais there is, eschewing chaptalization, commercial yeasts or filtration. This intensive natural approach has paid major dividends, as Domaine du Vissoux holds spots on the wine lists many of France's finest wine bars and restaurants, and is the highest-rated Beaujolais producer in the popular guide Les Meilleurs Vins de France.
The unique quality of these structured, age-worthy wines comes not only from the sustainable farming and non-interventionist cellar practices, but from the unique terroir possessed by the domain. The Chermettes' 15 hectares of Gamay vines (as well as an additional hectare planted Chardonnay) in Saint-Verand are situated on granitic soil, as opposed to the limestone-clay soil that dominates most of southern Beaujolais. This granitic terroir seems to lend Burgundian structure to these bottlings. Domaine Vissoux also possesses a parcel of Moulin-A-Vent and a parcel in Fleurie. These wines are essentially what we would have enjoyed had we been sitting in a cafe in Lyon in the 1950s -- rather than a few decades later.