Our vineyard is called Domaine Bastide Jourdan, in reference of course to our family who has lived there for several generations. The term "Bastide" designates a Provencal country house.
Originally, Roger Jourdan, the patriarch of the family, and his wife Léonce were market gardeners. They grew fruits and vegetables and sold them in this building. Roger had already planted a few hectares of vines with his father. Each year, he took his production to the cooperative cellar of Bollène.
In 1990, his son, Jean-Pierre Jourdan, created the Domaine de la Bastide Jourdan. Together with his wife, Valérie Jourdan, they instigated the audacious wine-making project. The first tanks were built in concrete by Valérie's father, who was a mason. We still use them today!
And among all their bold projects, Valérie and Jean-Pierre also had two children; my little brother Valentin and me (Alexandre). Since my earliest childhood, I have helped my parents both in the vineyards and the cellar. Today, I have taken over the estate with my wife. The transition and the transmission have been carried out gradually.
The farm is located in Bollène, in the Rhône valley. The land is around the estate, across several municipalities. We cultivate many grape varieties: Syrah, Chardonnay, Merlot, Grenache, Carignan, Viognier, etc. A truffle field adjoins a small plot of vines; this is where Grandpa Roger went to look for truffles with his dogs. Today, we are trying to do the same with Roxy, our very young dog. There is still work to be done.
The vineyard is very lively. In the courtyard, there are 4 lodgings, run by Valérie Jourdan. Many activities are organised throughout the year: bike rides, ampelography, a Christmas market, days in the countryside, etc.
The vine is a perennial plant that does not need to be irrigated; it manages to draw the water it needs from deep water tables, due to its pivot root and surface root system, which collects in nutrients and rainwater.
For 20 years, we have been conscious of what we eat. For our health and that of our loved ones, we like to eat what is healthy AND tasty. With this awareness, it was obvious that we could not continue to work with harmful products. That is why we turned to organic agriculture. After all, we are the first consumers of our wine!
Behind our conversion to organic, there is also a thought for our planet and how we want to pass it on to future generations. Even if our vineyard represents a tiny part of Earth, 'at least we do our part', as the parable of the Hummingbird explains so well.
We apply organic agriculture, and we work every second row on the vines. That is to say that one row out of two is left grassed to limit the production of grapes by creating competition. The goal is not to produce a lot but to produce quality. Grass cover also makes it possible for a tractor to pass through the vines even when it has rained.
The grape marc is what is left from the harvest. This marc is harvested by the State and taken to a distillery to make alcohol. This is a mandatory requirement. In general, there is little waste.