Fourth generation vintner Béatrice Despres proudly farms 4 hectares of one of Fleurie’s finest and most iconic parcels, La Madone. Her steep parcel of old-vine Gamay enjoys south-by-southeast facing sun exposure in granite soils and is protected by the village’s iconic 19th century statue of the Madonna.
While the vineyard is the envy of the village, one can easily see how much effort it takes to farm, as the 40 percent gradient of the slope demands that it be worked exclusively by hand. Beatrice takes her work ethic the extra mile by using mostly organic treatments—quite the added effort for this one-woman show. Assisted by Stéphane Aviron in the cellars, she employs traditional, whole-cluster vinifications with native yeasts. They use old oak foudres to age the wines for eight to 14 months, depending on the conditions of the vintage. If the wines of Fleurie are considered some of the most feminine and luscious wines of the region, those of Domaine de la Madrière are among the village’s best examples.