Bret Brothers/Domaine La Soufrandiere

Great wine will make itself apparent whatever its classification. Like all of France’s greatest winegrowers, the Bret family works tirelessly in its vineyards to produce the highest standard of grapes possible. Since arriving on the Burgundy scene in 2000, the limestone-sculpted wines of the brothers Jean-Philippe and Jean-Guillaume Bret (La Soufrandière) have amassed the kind of critical acclaim that one normally associates with the finest growers of Puligny, Meursault and Chassagne Montrachet. To put it succinctly, we don't think it’s an exaggeration to suggest that Burgundy in general, not simply the Mâconnais, has a real supernova in its ranks. The balance, polish and refreshing deliciousness are all spot on. As you may have already surmised, we recommend these wines without hesitation. They can deliver as much pleasure and interest as a 1er Cru from one of the Côte d’Or’s finest growers.

Most of the Soufrandière vines grow on a perfectly situated east-facing slope of Pouilly-Vinzelles, one of the trio of Pouilly villages, including Pouilly Fuissé, that form a limestone bowl surrounded by Saint-Véran. This, the Bret brothers’ most important site, is in a climate called Les Quarts and is undeniably excellent real estate for wine. The Bajocian limestone soils, high in both calcium carbonate and quartz, have the mineral power to infuse the ripe and juicy fruit with mouth-wateringly chalky, limestone cut and earthy complexity. The vines here have been farmed organically since 2000 and today all of La Soufrandière’s 4-ha of vineyard (there is also a parcel in Mâcon-Vinzelles and in the rarely seen Beaujolais-Leynes) are certified biodynamic.