A family business
The château of Lacarelle is the one of the oldest castel of Beaujolais. It groups together 138 hectares of vines on the hills of St Etienne des Oullières, St Etienne de la Varenne and Arbuissonas, in the Beaujolais
since 250 years
The ancestors of the Comte Durieu de Lacarelle had owned earths near from the actual production area. In the middle of the 18st century , they created a warehouse in Paris to developpe outgoings for their wines. Vines had been planted in replacement of poor cereals. In 1750, they bought what is today the center of the domain : the Chateau de Lacarelle
Since more than two hundred years, the Durieu de Lacarelle transmit, from father to son, their passion for this domain. There, they produce high quality Wines, with the precious help of ten faithful families.
In 1969, Louis Durieu de Lacarelle, current owner, took the head of the family domain. His passion for wine, combined with its experiences obtained by managing other domains around the world, and with his participation to the works of professional institutes of the branch, allow him to success in what always was the objective of its ancestors:
« Produce young wines of quality, that do not need to mature during years for beeing excellent... and make those wines famous in France and abroad ».
The yearly success of "Beaujolais - Nouveau" gave to the Beaujolais region a world wide famous name. Indeed, the Beaujolais Nouveau makes too often people forgeting that Beaujolais always produced and continue to produce wines of high quality, noticeable in all the seasons.
Following the works of his ancestors, Louis Durieu de Lacarelle and his spouse harmonized modernisation and respect of traditions, in order to produce and to raise high quality wines ... that is probably the reason why those wines are frequently primed.
The quality is also confirmed by the fidelity of customers, not only in Europe but in Asia and America
The domain is situated on a granitic soil, this one confer to the wine a great distinction, with a powerful taste and a beautiful dress, developping its fruit perfumes, its fineness and its elegance. Every year, we are working to obtain a wine having the tasting qualities of red wines and the smelling qualities of white wines.
TASTING IT: Easy to drink and fresh. The right temperature do drink our wine is between 13°C and 14°C, maximum two years after the harvest.
EYE: Red, supported, limpide and brilliant.
SMELL: fine and rich Perfumes that evoke the cherry, the violet and small red fruits.
MOUTH: A very harmonious balance, aromatic and fresh. Wine that imposes for his beautiful structure, rich, supple and long in mouth.
The Château de Lacarelle gives a great importance to the culture of the vine, which is the first condition to make an high quality wine OLD VINES, AS A QUALITY FACTORS.
All the cultural means stretch to preserve as long as possible the old vines, of which the wines quality are more constant than those of the young plantations. Today, there is not more than one stumps of white juice black Gamay ,which was selected according to quality criteriums . This vines live almost 60 years. To preserve the persistence of the production potential of the vineyards, it is necessary to replant each year, almost two hectares. These plantations are made with an high density (more than 9000 feet per hectare), cut in "Gobelets bas" ("low tumblers" - the name that was given to the way the plant is cut during the winter).
The chateau de Lacarelle give a great importance to the protection of the nature and to the respect of the environment. These choices induce a certain type of cultural methods. We summarized it in this page, from the plantation to the wastewater treatment...
FIGHT AGAINST EROSION
The grounds on which the vines are cultivated is made from the slow decomposition of granit. This is therefore a very poor soil. Sometimes, vines roots are contenting with less than thirty centimeters of a sandy soil, untill they meet an hard boulder.
In order to preserve the value of all the efforts made by the Château de Lacarelle, the vine must keep at his disposal a sufficient soil volume. That the reason why it is essential to limit or stop erosion provoked by even weak rains. The density of water collecting networks and drain canals is the solution and implies heavy investments each year.
USE OF NATURAL FERTILIZER
Close the vine culture zone 30 ha of grass field allow to feed a flock of 150 sheep. The fumier of the sheep is recovered and be used as a basis to the amendements of which the vine need on this very poor ground.
PROTECTION OF VINES AND FRUIT ECOLOGICAL PRACTICES
Insects and mushrooms are a permanent threat on the health of the vine and the quality of grapes. To face this threat, the Château of Lacarelle stretched to combine effectiveness and big prudence in the use of the pesticides. The practice of the "reasoned fight" as a consensus between biological and intensive traditional production process. With the help of the national nature protection services, the chateau de Lacarelle is contributing to the reduction of the use of chemical pesticides
WINERIES WASTEWATERS TREATMENT
In order to produce good wine, it is necessary to use a lot of water (to wash and clean the wine dishes). The Château of Lacarelle engaged itself with the regional Water Agency (Corse Rhône Méditerranée) to treat its wineries wastewaters and to reject in the nature only treated and safe water (DCO<300mg/L). The treatment is done into a two phase biological process that use and improve the natural digestive capabilities of micro-organisms. 1.Forced ventilation: The wastewaters are ventiled inside of a recipient in which comprimed air is being blowed . This process make possible the development of micro-organisms that nourish themselves with the pollution contained into the wineries wastewater. 2.Filtration : The second step consists in leaving the purified wastewaters flow on a prepared planted ground where selected flowers will filter the rest of the pollution. The outgoing of the all process present excellent results regarding to the chemical analyses (DCO <150mg/l). The quantities of pollution are half of the rejection norms.