Q&A with Sandrine Darriet Froléon of Vignobles Darriet
The Darriet Family history began in 1798 when Alfred Darriet started making wine on his Loupiac property, using grapes affected by botrytis. This produced the white sweet wine Château Dauphiné-Rondillon. Eight generations later, siblings, Sandrine and Jean-Christophe carry on the family tradition.
What is the history of the Darriet family?
Wine has been part of our history for eight generations. Our parents had the wisdom to make my brother and I work in the vineyard from a very young age by harvesting, working on the labelling, and participating in trade shows in France. These were always convivial moments, rewarded by moments of celebration. It was obvious to us that we wanted to carry on the family tradition.
How many châteaux and labels does the Darriet family have in its portfolio?
We currently manage six estates. The oldest one has been in our family for 200 years. Production has been centralized at our Loupiac site since the 1960s in order to facilitate the vinification process. My brother Jean-Christophe manages the whole production, while my oldest brother Philippe remains our wine consultant for the entirety of our wine portfolio.
Which wine(s) are you most proud of?
Cuvée d’Exception from Château Dauphiné-Rondillon (lot 3385). This wine is a real feat because it is made from grapes that are naturally so concentrated that the sugar alone could stop the work of the yeasts and create volatile acidity at the end of fermentation. But this is not the case, thanks to the indigenous yeasts!
What wine do you like to open at family gatherings?
Our father enjoyed opening old vintages of Loupiac that he served as an apéritif and for which he always had a little anecdote. It fascinated me to see these amber colours and this freshness and aromatic sweetness, even 30 years later. I continue this family tradition that makes these moments unique.
What does your collaboration with Opimian and its Canadian Members mean to you?
This collaboration is a great opportunity for us because it allows us to make long-term developments while pushing us to explore new ranges–like Petite Marine (lots 3390, 3391, 3392). We want to offer Opimian Members excellence and the best possible wines from our estate, with a unique sensory journey through our terroirs. We are also happy to count on Opimian to see more people trying our Château Moutin (lots 3386, 3387, 3388) and are excited to see the interest in high-end cuvées like Cuvée d’Exception (lot 3385). In short, Opimian enriches our wines and our work!
Do you have a tasting room that our Members could visit during a stay in France?
Yes, we do. We like to create cultural bridges between people through our wines: it will be a joy and a great pleasure to receive Opimian Members in Loupiac!
In one word or phrase, what is the philosophy of Darriet Vineyards?
Wine is a love story.