Jean-Pierre and his son Samuel Baron own a 20-hectare family domaine in the village of Thesee, about a 30-minute drive east of Tours, on the right-bank of the Cher River. Beginning in 1946, Jean-Pierre’s father was among the first to plant Sauvignon Blanc grapes in this region, which is now recognized as Appellation Touraine Controlee. Jean-Pierre Baron decided to leave the local coop and begin estate bottling with the 1998 vintage, and a new Loire star was born. In recent years, he has handed the vineyard and winemaking duties to his son, Samuel. Beginning with the 2010 growing season, Samuel initiated the transition of his estate to organic farming, or “Agricultural Biologique.” The domaine will attain its certification within the next couple of years.
The Barons prune severely in the fall season to limit yields to a very low under-40 hectolitres per hectare and ensure healthier, riper fruit. Organic, composted fertilizer is used only when necessary, and the winemakers strive to prevent vine diseases and parasites before they become problematic. The topsoil is lightly tilled so as the remove weeds without disturbing the sub-soil, thereby encouraging the vine’s roots to go further down into the ground. The deeper the roots, the more consistent the wine is from vintage to vintage, since the vines are less affected by temperature variations in the top soil.