The why, the what and the how of...

Domaine François Crochet

In the space of twenty years, François Crochet has established himself as one of the most talented winegrowers in Sancerre, producing some of the appellation’s best wines. This small, family-run estate doesn’t make enough wine to meet the demand.

Son of vignerons Robert and Marie-Solange Crochet, François took over the estate in 1988. His parents come from two families with a long-standing association with Bué, a tiny village just a few kilometres west of the town of Sancerre. Today, with his wife Carine, Crochet farms 11.5 hectares of prime vineyards encompassing all three of the main Sancerre soil types: “caillottes” (pure limestone), “terres blanches” (clay limestone) and “silex” (flint). They farm Sauvignon blanc and Pinot Noir.

Sancerre, located on the left bank of one’s of France most famous rivers, the Loire, lies on top of the hills and small valley which was once covered by the ocean. The result is the famous Kimmeridgian limestone marl (known as “terres blanches” in France). It is made of calcium-rich shells from ancient sea life, tiny sea creatures resembling today’s oysters. The same band of chalky limestone is also found in Chablis and in the south of Champagne.

The Crochet vineyards are on average about 35 years old, totalling more than thirty parcels spread over the villages of Bué, Sancerre, Crézancy, Thauvenay, Verdigny and Sury-en-vaux. There is the utmost respect given to the best, traditional methods at Crochet and they adopt a biodynamic approach in the vineyards. The yields are controlled by bud reduction in spring and later in the year, if necessary, green harvesting. The harvest itself is carried out completely by hand to enable a first sorting in the vineyards and then again at the winery.

The Sauvignon blanc undergoes a very gentle pressing which is then followed by alcoholic fermentation in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks (between 14-18 degrees Celsius depending on the cuvée).

Our selection at Great Domaines

If you don't see what you are looking for please contact us to order.