Based in Pommard, Domaine Comte Armand dates back to 1828 and is ranked amongst the greatest red wine producers in Burgundy. For almost 170 years the domaine produced wine from a small 5 hectare monopole called Clos des Epeneaux. It wasn’t until 1994 that the domaine expanded and began tending to vines in Volnay and later Auxey-Duresses, taking the total size of the domaine to 9 hectares.
This Cote de Beaune based domaine strives to produce wines which are reflective of their terroir and are since Benjamin Leroux took over as winemaker in 1999 Comte Armand has been a dedicated advocate of organic farming practices; herbicides are not used, the land is ploughed by horses and ornamental and medicinal plants as well as fruit trees and an apiary have been planted alongside the vineyards to promote the biodiversity and health of the soils. In 2014, Leroux handed the reins over to Paul Zinetti who joined Comte Armand in 2010. Zinetti has continued to deliver some outstanding terroir-driven wines and maintains the biodynamic principles established by his predecessor.
Each harvest is 100% de-stemmed – but not crushed – in order to retain the purity of each individual berry. The maceration process lasts for around four weeks, which is considered fairly long by traditional Burgundian terms. Comte Armand believes this gives the wine time to settle and form a more harmonious structure. As with their processes in the vineyards, the phases and cycle of the moon have been used to govern the timetable in the winery since 2001. Depending on the appellation and the age of the vines, the wines are then aged for 18 to 24 months in barrels. The percentage of new oak used in this process varies for the different levels of wine they produce – from 0% for the Village level wines to 30% for the old vines of Clos des Epeneaux.