First and foremost, Chéreau Carré is a terroir-first domaine,
with two generations working closely together, striving for the clearest expression of each of their old single vineyards.
Several of their sites are part of a new system called Crus Communaux, used to geographically classify distinct villages. Consisting of ten separate villages and microclimates, Crus Communaux represent the best that the Nantes wine region has to offer, with wines of great complexity and exceptional aging potential. With a maximum yield of 45 hl/ha and a minimum of eighteen months of aging on the lees, these wines are clear snapshots of their natural environments and exceptional values, given their superior price-to-quality ratio.
The first terroir and family home is Chasseloir, a vineyard with schist soil in the heart of the Muscadet Sèvre et Maine appellation on the hillsides above the river Maine, right between Saint-Fiacre sur Maine and Château-Thébaud. The Chasseloir farm was purchased in 1953 by Bernard Chéreau Senior. Cuvée Comte Leloup comes from a 5ha site at the entrance to their home called Château de Chasseloir, with a vine age of over 100 years. These vines are the oldest in the Muscadet region. Hand-harvested grapes are brought to the Chasseloir vinification cellar, which is built on a hillside. The work here is done exclusively by gravity and without the use of pumps, which can cause oxidation and decrease the aromatic potential of the wines, an attribute Bernard feels is important for the wines of Muscadet. For the same reason, only indigenous yeasts from the vineyard are used in fermentation. Comte Leloup always sees extensive bottle aging before release and is produced only in excellent vintages. As a result, Comte Leloup will age for more than 20 years, proving to be one of the best values in wine.
The second vineyard of Chéreau Carré is Château de l’Oiselinière, a 10ha vineyard which has belonged to the family since 1960. The vines here are planted on a sunny, south-facing orthogneiss dome, near the village of Vertou, directly in the confluence of the Sèvre and Maine rivers. The vineyard is in a very idyllic setting within a natural clos, protected on one side by the surrounding woods and on the other sides by the river (which also moderates temperatures for even ripening). One would struggle to find a more natural and biologically diverse vineyard in the region. Here, they produce two wines from schist and orthogneiss soils: Château l’Oiselinière de la Ramée from eight hectares of 40-year-old vines and Le Clos du Château l’Oiselinière, from two hectares of 80-year-old vines at the top of the dome.