Christian Ducroux January 2019 (Photo by Eben Lillie)

The Beautiful Natural Wines of Christian Ducroux: 2018 "Exspectatia," "Patience," "Esquisse" and "Thibault!" (Pre-Arrival)


Chambers Street is honored to work with Christian Ducroux, who produces vibrant, delicious "wines of nature" from his five hectares of living soils in Thulon, above Regnié-Durette in the Beaujolais. Our tasting with Christian in January revealed a brilliant 2018 vintage for the "Exspectatia" (formerly kown as Regnié)!  The wine possesses deep, complex red and black fruits with fabulous purity and length, and is fresh and bright despite the higher than usual degree of alcohol, at 13.5% - normally between 11 and 12.5%. While this wine has been tightly allocated in the past, the generous yields in 2018 allow us to sell case quantities of this beautiful wine. Please - enjoy some now in it's vivacious youth, but be sure to age some as well. As we mentioned last year, at a recent tasting of 2009s, Ducroux's Regnié was the clear favorite in a flight containing many of the finest wines of Beaujolais.

Arriving with the 2018 Expectatia, all with zero SO2:

2017 "Patience" - as the name indicates this is a wine to cellar. This is the last juice of the press, best enjoyed at five to fiteen years of age. 6 bottle limit please.

2018 "Esquisse" - Christian's delightfully fresh and complex rosé.

2018 "Thibault" - This is the first release of the new white wine, named after his son, a blend of Riesling & Pinot Gris, grown in Christian's high-altitude parcel, along with the Prologue. Needless to say it's fascinating and delicious, three bottle limit please.

Ducroux vines in January 2019 - You should see them in the summer!

At a recent seminar promoting "Regenerative Agriculture," based on no-till farming, we thought of Christian's great work in the vines - the diverse tress and plants in the vineyard, minimal if any plowing  - usually just a "décavillonnage" along the vines - and his avoidance of the "organic" copper-sulfate treatments against mildew. His vineyard is happily sequestering carbon deep in the soil, as opposed to the bare, eroded land around him! Christian's attention is primarily on the health of his soils, the most important factor in producing true wines of terroir.  His vineyards are a glorious oasis of green, even in winter, surrounded by the herbicided, eroded hillsides of conventional farming.

Picking is done in several passes with a careful selection in the vineyards, as maturation varies due to the diversity of vegetation in and around the vines. Christian aims for mature grapes, but that have low sugar levels, in the style of Chauvet, with normally 10.5 to 12.5% alcohol as finished wines. Vinifications here are with wild yeasts, with zero sulfur added, with usually a pied-de-cuve taken a week or two earlier from all his parcels. It's hard to communicate the committment and energy at this estate, showing that viticulture can be healthy, almost totally self-sufficient, and beneficial to its environment while producing vibrant natural wines at the highest levels of artistry!

A certain Sommelière in the Ducroux cellar.


Ducroux, Christian 2018 Vin de France Exspectatia

(Tasted from three different barrels, January 2019) Ripe plum and berry fruit aromas, blackberry liqueur, earth,  rose, licorice. The palate is deep, long and elegant with earthy  red current, blackberry fruit, minerals and firm acidity, terrific length of fruit and stone, balanced and bright. This is both a superb natural wine and a great wine of terroir. Probably best 2022 - 2030.  We think Christian practices some of  the best farming we've ever seen - his soils are covered  with  thick growth, even in winter and fruit trees grow between the vines. His tehniques are complex and intelligent, the product of forty years of experience with organic and biodynamic farming. Thank-you, Christian Ducroux!  David Lillie

  • red
  • 64 in stock
  • $17.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur

Ducroux 2017 Vin de France Patience 3 btl maximum

(Tasted from barrel January 2018) Deeper, dark fruits than the 2017 Expectatia, more tannin, a bit "animal" - "a ittle Brett in this barrel" said Christian, smiling, but still delicious and  with great depth and minerality. Needs time. A 2010 tasted recently showed beautifully. David Lillie

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $18.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur