Origin : The Fougas vineyards are one the oldest properties in this area, the land once belonging to the Priory of Bellegarde. One 18th century watercolour shows the land comprising a single holding, a situation that continues to this day. A very fine 18th century house stands to remind us of this glorious past.
Area : 17 hectares. Appellation Côtes de Bourg.
Grape varieties : 75% merlot, 25% cabernet sauvignon.
Average vine age : 37 ans.
Annual production in numbers of 12-bottle cases : 3 750 cases (45.000 bottles).
Harvesting : A meticulous process carried out by hand in three stages : sorting table, to remove debris, “éraflage” to select the grapes, sorting table again to ensure that only grapes enter the vat.
Soil conditions : Geology : The superficial strata were deposited by water and wind. These have been washed down slope to form a mineral rich colluvium of ferruginous blue and red clay along with sand and gravel. This overlies limestone of the Fronsac Molasse which provides excellent drainage.
The topography is also interesting : Fougas lies on a fan of deposits which form a plateau at an altitude of 40m. This is naturally drained by two small streams on either side thereby greatly restricting any chance of erosion occurring. It is swept by westerly winds which dry the grapes and leaves quickly during rainy periods preventing disease occuring.
Our use of organic fertilisers and approaches to soil management promote animal life and microflora. This encourages the vine roots to deeply penetrate the soil and assimilate the assemblage of minerals in this terroir so that the specific characteristics of the soil are expressed in the wine.
Vinification & Maturation : Prefermentative cold maceration (5-8°C/41-46°F) to extract fruit flavours and colour from the grapeskins. Vinification in temperature-controlled stainless steel vats with punching down the must to encourage cuvaison i.e the extraction of the maximum amount fruit, colour flavour and tannin to the must without pumping. Malolactic fermentation in barrels. Barrel maturation on the lees (100% new barrels) during 18 months.
Practical considerations : In the vineyard – rational pest & disease control is employed to safeguard the quality of your wine and protect the environment. Complete vine-to-bottle product tracking.