Domaine Manoir du Carra

Country/Region: France - Burgundy - Beaujolais AOC

Domaine Manoir du Carra is located in the small town of Denice, south of Burgundy and in the heart of the Beaujolais area. The property dates back to 1850, and has been bequeathed from father to son for five generations. It is now owned by Jean-Noël Sambardier and his wife.

The philosophy of the family has always been based on the practice of a viticulture attentive to and respectful of the environment.The working methods employed are simple, effective and adapted as wine making methods which respect the tradition, without neglecting the interest of certain technological advances.

carra harvest02

Date Founded: 1962
Owner: Jean-Noel Sambardier
Winery Philosophy: Their passion for the wine and the vines leads to seek excellence in the production of wines with a true personality that expresses the typicity of the terroir.

In 1918, Jean-Marie Sambardier enters the field as a worker at the winery. Assisted by his son John, they endeavor to develop all the vineyard.

In 1962, Jean Sambardier decides to buy the entire farm to start his own production and diversify appellations. The purchase is done in "viager" - a system of payment where the buyer usually pays about 30% up front and then a monthly fee until the death of the seller.

In 1972, Jean-Noël Sambardier returns to the field determined to continue the tradition while developing the business. Frederic, his eldest son, joins him in 1999 after a strong and rewarding experience of wine making and distributing in the United States. The other brother, Damien, joined them in 2000, after having made many great wines at Domaine Laroche in Chablis.

Measuring four hectares (about 10 acres) in 1962, the area of the vineyard is now about 34 hectares (84 aces) and is home to different appellations. Beaujolais, Beaujolais-Villages, Brouilly, Julienas, Moulin à Vent, Fleurie and Beaujolais Blanc now provide the reputation and fame of the estate well beyond its borders.

A shared family passion from father to son, each member of the Sambardier family knew, over the generations, that each would bring his touch, experience and expertise to shape the character of the wines produced at the property. Today, it is with an eye to the future that Frederic and Damien Sambardier work to develop the estate.

Winery Acreage: 84 acres
Varietals Produced: Gamay,
Winemaker: Damien Sambardier

Carra Harvest

At Manoir du Carra, they are convinced that an understanding of the vine, in respect to biodiversity and natural balance, is essential to preserve the soil and better respect the environment.  Their goal is vines that are self-sufficient in their environment.

Proud of an ancestral tradition, Manoir du Carra is committed to harvesting all plots by hand.  Manual harvesting may cost more, but, in terms of quality, the results are incomparable.  After harvesting and sorting, the grapes are then sent to tanks for 4-18 days of fermentation, depending on the type of wine desired. Winemaking is conducted without the addition of sulfur and with meticulous temperature control.

34 hectares (84 acres) total, divided along the North-South axis between Beaujolais, Beaujolais-Villages, Brouilly, Julienas, Moulin à Vent, Fleurie and Beaujolais Blanc. The Sambardiers own 50 vineyard plots. The vines are 50-100 years old. Yields are 55 hl/ha.