Guide to the Loire regions

Quincy

Grower Profiles

Domaine Mardon
After Edmé, Jules, Emile, Pierre and Jean, Hélène Mardon represents the fifth generation to make wine in this modest cellar on the southern edge of the village of Quincy.

Edmé Houssier (1831 – 1909) is known to have established the domaine in 1870 and passed it to his son Jules (1862 – 1932), but during the scourge of phylloxera, he was forced to find alternative employment in the warehouses of Bercy, now a suburb of Paris before returning to Quincy in 1913 with the intention of re-establishing the vineyards and erecting a new cellar. The family line then passed to his son-in-law, Emile Mardon (1900 – 1971) in 1930, who constructed a third cellar in the village. Pierre Mardon (Hélène’s father) succeeded Emile in 1965 and was joined by his brother Jean (until now one of Quincy’s famous roofers) in 1981. After Pierre died in 1989, Jean took control of the domaine until 2002, when Hélène gave up her career in magazine publishing (and after a crash course in viticulture at the Lycée de Beaune) to return to run the domaine.

Today there are 15 hectares of vines (double what the family worked in the late 1970s) of which 2.4 ha are under location; one vineyard is rented from her uncle, whilst the other is owned by a retired vigneron. There are around 16 parcels in total, ensuring the vineyards are seriously fractioned, in some ways a benefit when it comes to diluting the risk of frost and hail damage. One of these parcels is located on the east bank of the river, close to Villalin, whilst another, Mirabeau, is split between the communes of Quincy and Preuilly, ridiculously ensuring that one part is planted to Sauvignon Blanc (Quincy) and the other to Pinot Noir (Reuilly).

There are two different Quincys produced: the first is a generic Tradition which accounts for around ten hectares worth of mixed Sauvignon plantings, whilst the Cuvée Saint-Edmé is sourced from a 1.5 hectare vineyard and is named in homage to Hélène’s great-great-grandfather.

The domaine began to produce Reuilly rouge with the 2001 vintage, buying a parcel of older vines as well as establishing some new plantings. The production within the Mirabeau lieu-dit remains tiny at 0.90 hectares, but it gives the domaine the option of including some red wine to its range. The resulting wine is raised in fût and tank (about 70%/30%).

A second red, called Terra Carmina, is an equal blend of Pinot Noir and Gamay, produced from vines planted by Pierre Mardon. The wine is sold as Vin de Pays des Coteaux du Cher et l’Arnon.

In the mid-1990s Jacqueline Friedrich in her book A Wine and Food Guide to the Loire cited Domaine Mardon as the joint best producer in Quincy. Sadly, this is no longer the case. My tasting at the domaine in June 2010 (of the 2008 and 2009 vintages) found the wines rustic and unresolved. The Reuilly rouge was 2008 savoury, earthy and starting to drying out whilst the Terra Carmina was also beset by rustic, hot-baked notes and a bitterness on the finish. It’s a shame that the sense of tradition of this long standing domaine is failing in the quality of its wines.

Domaine Mardon
Hélène Mameaux-Mardon
40 route de Reuilly
Quincy
T: + 33 2 48 51 31 60
F: + 33 2 48 51 35 55
contact@domaine-mardon.com
www.domaine-mardon.com

 

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