On the peninsula of Avert, about 70 kms south of the coastal town of La Rochelle, is the only distillery still open in the area – Domaine des Claires.
Now boasting a third generation of expertise in the family – Jonathon Guillon, Domaine des Claires have decided to open the doors to public visits. Mr Guillon is no stranger to the science of the grape – having studied and specialised in Oenology and obtaining his National Diploma. His studies saw him travel to Peru, where he studied and worked with 12 different grape varieties, before moving to Gascony where he learned the expertise that goes into producing armagnac and floc.
He has now returned to his home town and has joined with his father – Thierry Guillon – in the family distillery business. Upgrading the family stills to gas in 1991, Domaine des Claires now has a capacity of 20 hectolitres that can distil wines in two months, instead of the four that were necessary when the stills were coal fired – and they don’t need to use sulphides.
Jonathon and Thierry sell only the production of their own vineyards – and, thanks to new planting rights, are planning to sell Cognac VS, VSOP and XO, along with a rose Pineau, merlot rose and colombard white. Their produce will all be labelled with the easy to recognise emblem of the bird of the marsh – the Egret.
Visiting hours are from 10:00 – 12:30 and 16:00 to 19:00 every day except Sunday.
Source and Pic: www.sudouest.fr