In the post-WW2 period, when intensive agriculture and productivism triumphed in Burgundy, the 80s and 90s were to be decades of a return to the land, a return to practices free from chemical products in the vineyard and in the cellar, and to healthy, authentic wines. Initiated by pioneers like Dominique Derain in the Côte de Beaune, this approach opened a new era in Burgundy.
A pioneer in organic farming and biodynamics in Burgundy since the 1990s – along with a handful of other winegrowers from the Côte de Beaune such as Didier Montchovet, Jean-Claude Rateau, Emmanuel Giboulot –, Dominique Derain is based in Saint- Aubin, a small village set back from the prestigious neighboring appellations, Puligny and Chassagne-Montrachet. Saint-Aubin offers some great terroirs, which are elevated by viticulture that respects the life of the soil and the vine, and by vinification without corrective interventions: such is the approach of Dominique Derain, a free spirit, full of verve, a fan of wines where authenticity and pleasure go hand in hand. The 6 hectares of his estate are spread over Saint-Aubin, but also Gevrey-Chambertin, Pommard and Mercurey. Free, living wines, where the winemaker's sole principle is to accompany the expression of the terroir. In 2017, he sold his estate to Julien Altaber, who had worked alongside him since 2002.