Philosophy

Jean is also a doctor, and Anne is a hydrogeologist by training. 

This gives us different but complementary visions of the estate, based on balance and respect for life. 

Strengthening the immunity of the vines, preserving the extraordinary natural ecosystem and its biodiversity, but also ensuring the well-being of the people who work and live on the estate, are our fundamentals.

The ecosystem

We have rethought the biodiversity of the estate by planting hedges with numerous varieties of bushes and indigenous trees between and at the end of the vines, and by breaking up the new plantations. 

Piles of stones, gradually colonised by natural vegetation, also provide shelter for small animals and/or insects.

Wetlands and small ponds welcome a whole new fauna of batrachians, insects (dragonflies) and aquatic birds.

More than 250 nesting boxes and bat hotels have been placed in the trees throughout the estate, almost all of which are now inhabited. 

The estate is regularly monitored by ornithologists and botanists from the Aude Nature association.

All this life also contributes to the control of insect pests, which are not very welcome as they could damage our future harvest. 

Finally, the flocks of sheep of local shepherds take advantage of the beautiful grass cover of our vines from November to February, also contributing some useful natural fertilizer.

The vineyards

Not using any synthetic chemical products in the vineyards has always been the unspoken rule of the Lignères doctor-winemakers, a “union minimum”. Jean decided to formalise this and to have the estate certified as Organic in 2007.

But this was not enough. Solutions had to be found to the imbalances observed, and the terroir and the grape varieties had to be made to “speak” more. We needed to compensate for the monoculture of the vine with greater biodiversity. We must listen to the rhythms of the estate and aim for harmony.

In short, our estate is like us, it must feel good and strong in order to blossom and to be able to give beautiful fruit thanks to our good care.

And it is biodynamics that has helped us to do this since 2012. 

Thanks to numerous exchanges, visits to estates in France and abroad, training and coaching, it is with confidence, enthusiasm and care that we practice common sense biodynamics on our large estate.

Pragmatic, adapted agronomic practices, accompanied by the application of biodynamic preparations, herbal infusions/purines, vitalise the soil and the vines even more. Their immunity is gradually strengthened.

And despite climate change, which in our region is marked by an increase in evapotranspiration, the vines no longer suffer from water stress in summer. The living soils, rich in micro-organisms, with their diverse plant cover, play their role as a buffer, keeping water better; their nutritional value is also better.

This means that our grapes ripen earlier, fresher and with a lower concentration of sugars, with a lower potential alcohol content and therefore a better balance.

The cellar

Our ultimate goal is to produce wines that are free and precise, that make their terroirs and grape varieties “speak”. And the expression of freshness, tension and dimension, balance, elegance, in short, EMOTION.

After a manual harvest, each plot is vinified and aged separately. Fermentations are carried out naturally with indigenous yeasts, limiting the addition of sulphur and without any other input. Patient, trusting work accompanies the gentlest possible vinification and ageing, in vats, jars and ceramic eggs (terracotta or sandstone), and barrels. Everything is done to preserve balance.

It takes technique, of course, knowledge and rigour, but also sensitivity, kindness and a touch of fantasy. It is also necessary to know how to build a good team, to listen, to exchange and to accept questioning with humility.

Jean’s art is to imagine his ideal wines several years in advance. And to do everything, from the planting to the bottle, so that the final picture is the reflection of his vision.

The wines of La Baronne bear this unique signature.