The typical caillotes soils of Verdigny

Domaine Thomas

VigneronJulien Thomas
LocationVerdigny (Cher)
Size of Domaine15 ha
TerroirContinental climate. Terres blanches (Kimmeridgian clay-limestone soils), argile à silex (clay with a lot flint), caillottes (draining and shallow weathered limestone soil, often Portlandian, with lot of stones on the surface). West facing hillside, windy plateau. Gentle slopes around 300m altitude.
ViticultureCertified organic from 2020 vintage (Ecocert)
View Domaine Thomas wines ↓

Freshly qualified from the Lycée Viticole in Beaune, Julien spent two years at Domaine Tollot-Beaut before coming back to the family domaine in 2005. The terroir-centric approach of Burgundy left an indelible mark on Julien and every decision are now made to transfer as much terroir as possible from vineyard to bottle.

He eschewed herbicides, went back to working the soils to manage weeds, and trialled biodynamic on selected parcels in 2010 before rolling it out to the whole domaine in 2012. While most of the Thomas’ vines are in Verdigny, predominantly caillotes soils with some pockets of terres blanches, they also hold vineyards near the border with Pouilly-Fumé where most of Sancerre’s argiles à silex are found.

Wild yeast fermentation is key in setting Domaine Thomas’ wines apart, in an appellation where selected yeasts are still the norm, and so does extended ageing on the lees combined with low use of sulphur.

Domaine Thomas Wines

Le Pierrier
100% Sauvignon
100% Sauvignon (14.5% alc.)
(14.5% alc.)

This cuvée was the clear winner in a blind tasting of 20 domaines that we conducted in the winter of 2018. It is a blend of all the 'caillotes' (limestone pebbles) parcels of the domaine, the vines are 25yo on average, vinified in stainless steel and aged for at least a year. Quite textured for a Sancerre it shows restraint and precision, expressing its terroir rather than simple varietal character.

100% Sauvignon
100% Sauvignon (13.5% alc.)
(13.5% alc.)

Grand’Chaille comes from slightly older plots (40yo) on ‘silex’ in the villages of Saint-Satur, Ménétréol and Thauvenay. The silex gives this cuvée a slightly broader profile than Le Pierrier, there’s more gras on the palate but it’s also more incisive. Its mineral backbone brings focus and it lengthens the palate which finishes with intense notes of fennel and flint.