Domaine des BravesRégnié | Beaujolais
Régnié (say reh-NYAY) is one of Beaujolais’ more harmonious crus, combining the floral perfumes of neighboring Brouilly with the complex, black-fruited flesh of Morgon.
For five generations, the Cinquin family tended vines in Beaujolais. In the 1970s, it was Paul Cinquin, known locally as “Paolo” and an award-winning cyclist in his time, who purchased much of the prime Régnié terroir that established Domaine des Braves as one of the region’s leading estates.
North Berkeley met Paul in the late 1990s, in a cellar filled with cycling tricots and trophies, enjoying the bold fruit and spice of the family’s traditionally made Gamay wines – and continued on with Paul’s son Franck, who took the reins after Paul decided it was time to retire.
Indeed winemaking dynasties, just like world-class athletes, arrive at a point when they know it’s time to hang up the tricot and make way for a new generation. The family decided in 2020 to sell their vineyards and cellar to two young talents, eager to make a name for themselves on Beaujolais’ granite slopes.
Clément Deglaine and Victor Gentien met in school in Lyon, sharing a similar passion for regional wines and everything Beaujolais. Yet after their studies, the two went their separate ways: Victor to Domaine de la Janasse in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, to learn the secrets of old-vine Grenache; and Clément to Dijon, to focus on the region’s traditional liqueur, crème de cassis.
Yet it didn’t take long for them to reconnect and collectively decide that the call to Beaujolais was stronger than they both could resist. And as fate would have it, a grand family of Régnié was ready to hand over the reins to classic terroir – to two winemakers more than ready for the challenge.
We are very excited about the new Domaine des Braves, as it respects the traditions of a great multi-generational Beaujolais family while paving a new road to ever-greater Gamay wines.
FARMING & WINEMAKING
Vineyards sit at 900 feet in altitude on a stony plateau, facing full south. Soils are sandy, with sub-soils a mix of pink granite and limestone. This combination results in wines that are supple and textured, with refined tannins. Vines are on average 45 years old, with some as old as 80 years. All vineyard work is done sustainably, following organic practices and avoiding chemical treatments.
Grapes are harvested by hand and fermented whole cluster on indigenous yeasts in tank; wines are aged also in tank.
An elegant, full-bodied cru Régnié, rich in aroma and complex black fruits. Sourced from older vines and aged completely in tank, preserving Gamay’s heady spice and lively summer-ripe fruit.
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