Certified organic since its 2013 vintage, Domaine Berthet-Bondet is a pillar of the Jura winemaking tradition. With a variety of cuvées ranging from Chardonnay, Savagnin ouillé, and reds from regional varietlas (Trousseau, Poulsard, and Pinot Noir) are all of a quality that you shouldn’t let pass you by…
Domaine Berthet-Bondet is relatively recent as wine estates go, founded in the 1980s. Indeed, its owners don’t come from a viticultural background, their families having worked in artisanal trade and small industry. Jean Berthet-Bondet knew he wanted to forge a path for himself, so he set off to study agronomics in Montpellier. It was here that he met Chantal. Pursuing this passion for all things close to the earth, the couple settled in Château-Chalon. Chantal continued to work at the Agricultural School of Montmorot before becoming an agronomic engineer for the region’s Agricultural Council.
The house was ought in 1984 and the first harvests collected just a year later! The property and its vaulted cellar date from the 16th century, welcoming many generations of vignerons over time. In 1986, a winery was installed in the grange, and an ageing cellar of 400 square meters constructed the following year. A decade later, the domain needed room dedicated to storing its wine and labelling the bottles. Then, at the very beginning of the year 2012, Chantal retired from her career, joining the family domain in an administrative role. When we went to visit the domain recently (2021), Jean Berthet-Bondet was in the process of handing over the domain to his daughter, Hélène. Having initially started working there in 2013, she was more than ready to take up the torch.
The vineyards of Domaine Berthet-Bondet, often residing on sloping ground, are quite demanding. The estate has long been an advocate for responsible agriculture, ploughing the soils and letting grass grow among the vines. The Berthet-Bondet family began converting to organic growing in 2010, producing their first officially organic vintage in 2013. The land they work does not lend itself well to mechanisation, so the estate has a significant workforce. Overall, they tend to a surface area of 14 hectares, 4.5 of which are Savagnin grapes in the Château-Chalon appellation, and the rest under the Côtes-du-Jura label. Half of the vines are over 30 years old, with the others having been planted towards the end of the 90s. Harvests are carried out by hand and the grapes are vinified using classic techniques. Without adhering totally to the natural movement, the domain takes care not to use too much sulphur, especially in its red cuvées.