JEAN MAUPERTUIS, Saint-Georges-sur-Allier
Jean Maupertuis tends 3.8 hectares of vines in the commune of Saint-Georges-sur-Allier and La Roche Noir in Auvergne. He works principally with a local version of Gamay referred to as “Gamay d’Auvergne”, but also owns a little bit of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and a tiny amount of Noirfleurien, an ancient local varietal found only in his neighboring village of Mirefleurs. Most of his vines are on the venerable side, ranging from 40 to 100 + years.
A former computer scientist, Jean always loved wine, and to that end he bought a small parcel for fun in 1992, before finally leaving his job to study oenology in Macon. Jean worked alongside both Marcel Lapierre and Pierre Overnoy before starting the legendary Domaine de Peyra and now makes charming, vibrant wines from his own beautiful vineyards in the Auvergne. Setting up such an undertaking in Auvergne was certainly an uphill battle at first. The wines of this region were completely unknown and on the verge of disappearing
Neyrou 100% Pinot Noir from a vineyard, where the composition of soil changes dramatically from sand to clay. Auvergne landscape is bipolar, interposing hills of extinct volcanoes and risen ancient sea-bed of limestone. The vines are trained en lyre– double trellis with empty space in the middle, which looks like an ancient harp. It is a traditional trellising that concentrates grapes but requires additional hands-on work. Mechanical work is impossible with en lyre. The nose is expressive, red cherry, raspberry, flowery notes, the palate is lively and joyful. Easy-drinking Pinot, yet structured and perfectly in place.