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50 years: La Dominique's golden age


Smiling, full-bodied, hedonistic, with an equal desire to please: this is how 50-year-old women consider themselves according to sociological studies. The same is true for La Dominique, bought half a century ago by the Fayat group, which, after having undergone a makeover, displays a sparkling health without complexes and desires to make it known...

Gwendeline Lucas

A lovely story says that this beautiful sleeping property, acquired and awakened by the construction magnate in 1969, would take its name from a rich merchant who owned the property at the end of the 18th century and who named it after the island in the Caribbean. Nevertheless, La Dominique, a neighbour of Cheval Blanc, is now attracting all attention. With its haute couture gown made of 900 red steel blades, designed by architect Jean Nouvel according to a clearly sensory approach, we can only see it, who plays with daylight and offers a sparkling look to each visitor.

2013 was a time of questioning, of nuanced audacity because in this new setting, though its panoramic terrace with a restaurant dominates this wine landscape distinguished by UNESCO, inside, precision is the watchword: the vat house, high-tech sorting... For a new start, as it approaches fifty, La Dominique no longer hesitates to reveal its secrets, and now boasts about welcoming 11,000 visitors per year and serving 50,000 meals in its restaurant. It is looked at it with lust and desire.

Yann Monties

It must be said that its model of delicacy and balance remains the goal to be achieved. The vintages follow one another, with an insolent regularity. From the brilliance of this new setting come powerful wines, with a smooth and delicate caress, greeted by the most renowned sommeliers. "The Best Sommeliers of the World Andreas Larsson, Paolo Basso, Markus del Monego and Serge Dubs came to visit us during the 2017 Primeurs week. They have every confidence in our wines," says Gwendeline Lucas, who was appointed General Manager of the Fayat Vineyards in 2017 after working for 7 years in export.

In partnership with Yann Monties, the brand new technical director on all 3 properties (Château La Dominique, Château Clément Pichon, Château Fayat), previously at Château Haut Bailly, she admits to the new ambition of La Dominique: “To continue the ascent of La Dominique and join the circle of the classified Premier Grand Crus in 2022. The 2019 vintage is taking off, still on the advice of the Michel Rolland Laboratory, and its collaborator Julien Viaud with whom we share the same values. It is a magnificent vintage, very precise, which is close to my heart and signs our partnership with Yann”.

Pampered as it should be to honour the 50th anniversary of the beauty in the hands of the Fayat family, it has been the subject of new strategic orientations both in the vineyard and in the cellar. “We want to gain in finesse, in elegance, this requires more precise work in the vines, pruning in particular and the exploration of different vinifications, with integral vinifications, in amphoras according to the different types of soil. We will also replant Cabernet Franc, test Malbec. We are confident!” adds Gwendeline Lucas; like La Dominique, which will mark its entry into the famous golden age grail.

Bénédicte Chapard