The Domaine du Gringet team are setting out with one aim: to promote the rare Gringet grape, and ensure its position on the world stage. Just 22 hectares exist of this distinctive white Alpine grape. Domaine du Gringet owns most of these, having inherited them from Domaine Belluard, run by the pioneering Dominique Belluard, who sadly died in 2021.
After Dominique’s death, his estate was taken over and renamed by four partners: Raphaël Bennour and Miguel Sarzier, who had worked with Dominique for decades, alongside Rhône winemakers Vincent Ruiz and Franck Balthazar. They took over with the singular aim of continuing their friend’s work in championing the unique, aromatic Gringet to the world.
While Dominique was one of the first in the Arve Valley to use biodynamic practices, the Gringet team are now working towards organic certification. This, alongside careful vineyard management, is how they are managing the tricky Gringet grape – which in Raphaël’s words, has a tendency to “grow in all directions”.
The team have moved away from traditional styles of Gringet, which has historically been used for sparkling wines largely consumed by locals. While Dominique was the first to create still wines from Gringet, they have carried this on. Experiments are also underway as they introduce more of a “sense of place” to their wines; intra-pellicular maceration, blending, and even naming wines after vineyards are all on the cards for this new and vibrant operation.
Made from 100% Gringet, the nose of the 2020 Eponyme is fascinating and complex. White flowers, spiced pear and a touch of apple mix with notes of hay and herbal overtones. The palate is gorgeous and fine with a Riesling-èsque freshness cutting through the stoney purity and tart tangerine flavours like a spear. A light phenolic grip endures on the lovely, crisp finish. This is superb now but will keep for many years yet.