Who: Alain Tourenne. “Son and grandson of winemaker/farmers, I grew up in the vineyard and in the winery. I have worked in various wine trades: Cellar worker in a cooperative cellar, cellar master of a domain, technical director of a wine service delivery company and today a winemaker.”
Where: Saint-Magne-de-Castillon, 33350.
Vineyards: At the heart of the Bordeaux vineyards, Château Beynat, today represents an area of 17 hectares of different Appellations:
12 ha from Castillon
1 ha of Bordeaux rosé
2 ha of Bordeaux Blanc
1 ha from Saint-Emilion
“In order to optimize the quality potential of our terroirs, all our attention is focused on:
- Tilling by hand. No chemical weed killers are used. The soil is worked under the vines and between the rows with various tools to limit grassing.
- In the spring: disbudding allows us to regulate the number of branches. Lifting and lifting of branches is done by hand. In the summer: the stripping is carried out by hand to unravel the grapes, to avoid the piling up and to guarantee an optimal sunshine of the bunches. If necessary to regulate the yields we practice harvesting in green. The goal is to get 10 to 14 clusters per well positioned plant.
- Treatments are only made with sulfur to combat powdery mildew and copper (Bordeaux mixture) against mildew. We reason our passages according to the growth of the vine and especially of the pluviometry.Since 2015 we are biodynamic. This cultural practice shows the life of the soil, the plant and the wine produced. The goal, to raise the identity of our terroir, the harmony and balance of our wines.”
Cellar: “After this long work done in the vineyard, the decisive step that follows, is the choice of the date of the harvest. To determine this date, we regularly taste on all our parcels: the skins, the juice and the pips in order to appreciate the evolution.
– White: The white is pressed after a few hours of maceration. The juices obtained are vinified in thermoregulated vats from 18 ° C to 22 ° C. After fermentation, the wine is aged 5 months before bottling.
– Rosés: Rosés are stemming and then vinified in the same conditions as white.
– The reds: The sorting is very important, we use 3 sorting stations, among others the densimetric sorting. It eliminates all seeds that do not have sufficient maturity. The berries are transported in the tank without being trampled. After a few days of maceration the alcoholic fermentation begins only with local yeasts. It follows, pigeages and some pumping over to extract the best. After this stage, the maceration is longer or shorter depending on the wines and vintages. All our vats are thermo-regulated and winemaking takes place between 24 ° C and 26 ° C.
– The non-sulphites: Our conception of vinifying our wines in organic and biodynamic leads us to the very moderate use of sulfur. Thus certain cuvées are without sulfur:
– Merlot By Beynat Malbec is made at the same time as rosés. The grapes are put in vats, the fermentation is launched without sulfite then after two to four days, the juice is drawn; the end of fermentation takes place as for whites. It is bottled in the spring without adding sulphite.
– Cuvées Des Lyres and Cuvée Terre à Terre: Born on an exceptional terroir, resulting from harvests and more severe sorts, the berries are transported directly into the vat or jars. The vinification is slow, only the punching is done. These cuvées are raised 11 months for the jars and 12 to 14 months in barrels for the vintage of the lyres. The setting takes place under nitrogen with great care. No sulfite intake during all these stages. All our wines are aged from 12 to 18 months in vats or castes. Our bottling takes place according to the lunar calendar. The wines are kept in the cellar a few months before bottling and going to market.”
Fun fact: A particularity of our cellar: “Our press of 1926 gives us as much satisfaction; the grapes are gently pressed into juice that is reinstated into wine in delicate drops.”
Château Beynat wines are distributed in Massachusetts via Hogshead Wine Co.