Saint Martin des Champs

Wines Matured on the oak

L'Hermitage du Domaine Saint Martin des Champs, le Château Saint Martin des Champs, l'Hermitage du Domaine "Vieilles vignes" et "Terrasse de Fontenilles" Cuvée "Mathieu" are our four wines matured in oak.

This takes place in a magnificent underground cellar where the temperature and humidity are ideal and do not vary.

The cellar-work lasts from 12 to 14 months.

Each barrel, holding 225 litres, is made of selected oak from the Troncet Forest in Allier County in the Auvergne region of central France.

The barrels are used twice only. Half of each vintage is thus raised in new barrels and half in barrels that have been used for a previous vintage.

The wine is carefully monitored throughout the maturing period; it is tasted and analysed every two weeks.

The barrels are topped regularly to make up for the wine absorbed by the barrels and lost otherwise.

During cellar-work, each barrel loses some 10% by volume, i.e. 22.5 litres of wine on average.

That part of the wine absorbed by the wood, and which then evaporates into the air, is called the angels' share!

From the end of the tenth month the wine is tasted once a week to help determine the ideal moment for blending and bottling.

Pierre and Michel Birot then select the barrels containing the best wine only.

Some 10% of the wine is rejected and the remainder used in the final selection and blending.

The wines are bottled at the Château, guaranteeing both their authenticity and quality.