Bordes is our Friar Tuck, extreme natural gourmand, autodidact who’s created perhaps the most vital Saint Chinian available.
Domaine Bordes is located in the heart of the AOP Saint-Chinian. This 9ha estate is managed by Philippe and Emma Bordes. Propelled by a desire to return to the countryside, Philippe retired his life as a plumber and became a vintner. And after eating organically grown foods for over 30 years, organic viticulture was a natural choice.
Without formal training, Philippe and Emma studied books, observed other producers and learned from their mistakes. “It’s a bit like poker,” said Philippe. “You dearly pay one or two times, then you watch out! This is the basis of learning.” After purchasing several plots, they released their first vintage in 2001. Practicing biodynamics since the beginning, they gained organic certification in 2008, becoming one of fifteen organic producers in Saint-Chinian.
Surrounded by ‘garigue’, the vineyards here are isolated and rich in biodiversity. Most of the plots are plowed by horse and the family makes their own compost. They manage low-yields to better allow the vines to create their own immune defense. “If you request a reasonable production, and do not treat as soon as there is an issue,” said Philippe, “then step-by-step, the vine will be able to self-protect and become stronger.”
In the cellar, all operations are scheduled according to the lunar calendar. There is no temperature control, and everything happens naturally without additives with the exception of a small amount of sulfites in order to ensure the stability of the wines over time and travel.