Sylvain Martel Bessay 2020 Julienas Beaujolais
Sylvain Martel trained as a winemaker in the Southern Rhone and spent ten years running a small organic estate in the Ardeche. It was thanks to the Graillots of Crozes-Hermitage that Sylvain came to Beaujolais, joining them in establishing and managing Domaine de Fa. In 2016 Sylvain met our very own Anne-Sophie Dubois and settled down in Fleurie. It is thanks to Anne-Sophie that we have come to know his wines.
In 2018 he was ready to start his own venture and purchased a 1.3ha island of old gamay vines on a dramatic steep slope at 450m altitude in the lieu-dit of Bessay in Julienas. A terroir of blue stones, the tree-lined vineyard is planted to a high density, cultivation is organic and the yields are kept low.
Fermentation is semi-carbonic using native yeasts and whole bunches after the teachings of Jules Chauvet, and the wine is allowed to age 9 months in old barrels before being bottled without fining or filtration. The total production is a mere 3,600 bottles. The flavour is classic with stony freshness, fine, sandy tannins and a lovely blueberry and sour cherry fruit profile that calls you back for just one more glass.