Domaine Usseglio is, first and foremost, the story of a family. In 1948 Francis Usseglio, an Italian labourer, came to Châteauneuf-du-Pape to work in the vineyards. His passion for wine and motivation led him to take on a few hectares of vines on a sharecropping basis known as métayage. His son Raymond took over from him, continuing the tradition but adding a modern touch by converting the vineyards to biodynamic. Today, the 24-hectare Domaine Usseglio is run by Francis’ grandchildren, Jean-Pierre, Thierry and Stéphane and is one of the appellation’s leading lights. Its grape varieties are typical for Châteauneuf with Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre and Cinsault for red wine and Bourboulenc, Clairette and Grenache for white. The vines are between 30 and 60 years old and harvesting is carried out manually. The resulting wines have plenty of character, combining power with a hint of rustic simplicity.
About the cuvée
Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre that make up the cuvée are from sixty-six-year-old vines that have benefited from a clay and chalk-rich soil. Harvested, then destemmed they were then placed in concrete vats. André, his wife Marina and their daughter Alexandra then move on to pump-over and rack and return during fermentation then leave the grapes to macerate for forty days. The wine is then aged for a year. The wine is characterised by a frank and clean attack. It is ethereal on the palate. On the nose, complex aromas abound that oscillate between black fruit, spicy notes and some woody notes. Flavoursome and well balanced, it pairs well with delicate dishes such as marinated meat or mature cheeses.
The best vintages for Châteauneuf-du-Pape Pierre Usseglio Jean-Pierre & Thierry Usseglio :
2009, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2003, 2001, 2000, 1999, 1998, 1995, 1994
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General : The «bio» designation covers certified wines produced by biodynamic or organic methods, sustainably produced wines, and «environmentally friendly» wines that are not officially certified. These designations apply to recent vintages (the date of certification, if known, is specified in the estate description). See the blog article for more information on this designation.
Biodynamic : The «biodynamic» designation is used for all estates certified as using biodynamic methods, as verified by one of the two official bodies, Demeter or Biodyvin. All wines produced by biodynamic methods are also certified as organic. This designation applies to recent vintages.
Organic : The «organic» designation covers all estates certified as using organic methods, as verified by one of the bodies approved by the Ministry of Agriculture, such as Ecocert. This designation applies to recent vintages.
Sustainable : The «sustainable» designation covers all estates certified as using integrated or High Environmental Value (level 3 Environmental Certification) techniques. This designation applies to recent vintages.
Evironmentally friendly : The «environmentally friendly» designation refers to estates practising environmentally friendly wine-growing techniques, but that have not opted for certification or who are still in the process of converting to organic agriculture or biodynamics. These estates may have adopted biodynamic principles (non-certified) or simply no longer use chemical products. This designation applies to recent vintages.
Natural : Wines which are produced without any added sulfur (or almost any) and with no other inputs. However, given that there is no official body to issue the natural wine label, it is based on winemakers’ statements. This designation applies to recent vintages.