The Domaine de la Croix Senaillet Estate
This second generation old estate is located in the town of Davaye, in southern Burgundy. The winery was founded by Maurice Martin in 1969. His son Richard took it over in 1990 and was joined by his brother Stéphane in 1992. While Richard takes care of the vinification and the sales, Stephane is in charge of the vineyard. They sell 80% of their production in bottle and 20% to negociants. Currently, they export 40% of their wine outside of France.
"Domaine de la Croix Senaillet" takes its name from a cross that had been given by an ancient mayor of the village called Benoit Senaillet. The records show that the mayor donated the cross to Davaye in 1866 to replace the one that was destroyed in 1793 during the French Revolution. According to the common believes, the cross that was blessed in 1867 would protect the inhabitants of the village and everyone that would pass by.
The Domaine de la Croix Senaillet Vineyard
The vineyards are located on the south/southeastern slopes of the Solutre and Vergisson rocks. The estate spreads over 52 parcels in the town of Davayé and measures 22 hectares total (54.3 acres): 17 ha in St Veran, 5 ha in Macon, less than 1 hectare in Pouilly-Fuisse. The soil is both chalk and clay. The vines are 40 years old on average. In order to increase the quality of the grapes, Stephane has decided to use "culture raisonnee", which means that they watch carefully and daily the vineplant, checking for the sanitary level in the vineyard and use very small amount of pesticide and chemical products if necessary.
Saint Veran's AOC represents 696 hectares (1,726 acres) in total.
The total production for the AOC is around 42,775 hectoliters (474,089 twelve-bottle-case equivalent)
Croix Senaillet Macon-Davaye is 100 percent Chardonnay.
Pale brilliant yellow color. Fresh nose of citrus fruits (lemon, grapefruit). Mineral and salty notes on the palate. Fresh, supple and harmonious in the mouth.
Produced from 7 different parcels of vines spread over 3.77 hectares, planted on clay and limestone based soils. Average age of the vine is 28 years. Careful vinification. Minimal intervention in the vinification process. Modern equipment (pneumatic press, thermo-regulated tanks). Each parcel is harvested at full maturity. Destemming, slow press, slow fermentation, malolactic fermentation, aging on the lees.
Excellent as an aperitif and pairs well with grilled fish and Asian food.
Bright gold color. The wine expresses delicate toasty notes, subtle caramel, almonds and ripe fruits aromas. The mouth is round, ample. The oak is well integrated giving volume, depth and a juicy finish. This elegant and well-balanced wine shows the minerality of the Pouilly-Fuisse terroir and presents a great ageing potential
Surface area : 59 ares located in the village of Solutré and Fuissé.
Soil : Jurassic limestones mixed with platy marl.
South and North-east facing parcel.
Grape variety : organically-grown Chardonnay.
Plantation density 8.000 vinestocks per ha.
Age of vines : 70 years.
Very low yield focusing on concentration.
Harvest at full maturity; destemming; slow and gentle pneumatic pressing to ensure purity of fruit and extract fine aromas.
Very slow alcoholic fermentation partly in demi-muids of 228L. Malolactic fermentation
Aging on the lees for 10 months; stirring of the lees.
Pair with bresse traditional chicken served with Burgundian truffles, roasted lobster with cream of avocado, pork tenderloin with bacon and sweet potatoes.
Croix Senaillet Saint Veran is made from 100 percent unoaked Chardonnay.
Fresh and fruity with floral, peach and citrus fruit aromas followed by mineral notes. Mineral, citrus and honey flavors. Rich and luscious palate with a long finish.
Produced from a selection of 40 parcels spread over 17 hectares. Some of the parcels include: Maillettes, Bergades, Poncétys, Terres noires, Pommards, Chênes, Surigny, Prâgnes, Bruyère, Chailloux, etc Average age of the vines is 45 years. The soil is made of clay and limestone. South, southeastern exposure - a few plateaux. Careful vinification. Minimal intervention in the vinification process. Modern equipment (pneumatic press, thermo-regulated tanks). Each parcel is harvested at full maturity. Destemming, slow press, slow fermentation, malolactic fermentation, aging on the lees.
Dark and chocolate, spiced with pretty notes of allspice and clove, this wine is round and rich, bursting with ripe berries, combined with an earthy complexity and a velvety finish.
Made from 42% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, 29% Cabernet Franc
The wine spent 22 months on 75% new French oak with the remaining 25% second vintage French oak. Select barrels from the best forests of Taransaud, Boutes, Quintessance, and Vicard cooperages.
A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (60%), Cabernet Franc (30%) and Merlot, this wine seems a little green out of the gate, with aromas of herbs, cocoa, vanilla, black licorice, woodspice and black fruit. The fruit flavors display the warmth of this region, with the tannins providing some heft, stretching out over time. - Wine Enthusiast 91 Points
Tamarack Cellars’ 2011 Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Reserve is an outstanding blend of 42% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot and 29% Cabernet Franc that spent 22 months (each variety is kept separate until 12 months after the harvest) in 50% new and 50% once-used French oak. Classically styled, with lots of smoke tobacco, licorice and blackcurrant aromas and flavors, it has everything in the right place, in the right proportions, and is incredibly enjoyable to drink. Enjoy this medium to full-bodied, moderately tannic, balanced beauty over the coming decade, although it will probably last longer. - Robert Parker Wine Advocate 91 Points
This one-hundred-percent Merlot has really nice, bright red fruit, rose petals, and a richness on the nose. Flavors of plum, mountain strawberry and mocha come together with a balanced mouth feel and a long finish. Though it was a cooler vintage, I feel we have still captured the powerfully elegant style for which we are known.
"Good dark red. Sexy, slightly exotic scents of black raspberry, blueberry, mocha, tobacco, chocolate, spices and licorice. Plush, densely packed and alive, conveying a restrained sweetness and outstanding depth to its pliant red berry, mocha and spice flavors. Spreads out to saturate the palate on the back half, finishing with serious but suave tannins and superb persistence. This utterly seamless Merlot really showcases its vintage. While it will give pleasure early for its sheer density and breadth, it maintained its verve for 48 hours in the recorked bottle and should age well. The swan song of longtime winemaker John Abbott, this beauty was finished by new winemaker Dan Wampfler. - Stephen Tanzer"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (October 2017), 93 pts