Domaine Merlin

Year Established: 1987
Location: La Roche Vineuse, Mâconnais, Burgundy
Size: 11 hectares
Varieties: Chardonnay, Gamay, Pinot Noir
Viticulture: No pesticides or herbicides. Weeded by hand; manual harvest. Moulin à Vent and other less accessible plots are plowed by horse
Vinification: 100% de-stemmed except for Moulin à Vent. Single vineyard wines are aged in barrel for 18 months

Olivier and Corinne Merlin, along with their young sons Paul and Theo, are widely regarded for making some of the best wines in the Mâconnais. Olivier discovered his passion in 1977 when he had the chance to work harvest there. After earning a degree in viticulture and œnology from the Lycée Viticole de Beaune, he sold wine for two years while living in the Jura, which is where he met Corinne. He then worked for a time in Napa before returning to France in early 1987, when he and Corinne took over the 4.5 hectare estate of Vieux Saint-Sorlin, an estate that had been held by one family since 1750. Over the years they have added new vineyards in the Saint-Veran, Moulin-a-Vent and Vergisson appellations, and have begun making several cuvées with grapes from Pouilly-Fuissé.