Soon after taking over his father’s domaine in 1980, Jean Foillard set about revolutionising the world’s view of Beaujolais and its potential for wines of depth, structure and quality. Together with several other local vignerons, Jean Foillard followed the teachings of Jules Chauvet – a traditionalist who opposed the commercial nature of what was happening within the region. These included the use of old vines, never using synthetic herbicides or pesticides, harvesting late, rigorously sorting to remove all but the healthiest grapes, adding minimal doses of sulfur dioxide or none at all, and refusing both chaptalization and filtration. The end result allowed Morgon to express itself naturally; without the bubblegum and banana aromas of so many other Beaujolais available today. Its rustic structure, spicy notes and mineral-laden backbone are what a real Morgon is all about.
Majority of the estate’s vineyards are planted on the Côte du Py, the famed slope outside the town of Villié-Morgon and the pride of Morgon. These granite and schist soils sit on an alluvial fan at the highest point above the town and impart great complexity. They are amongst the most iconic slopes within Beaujolais. The vines range up to 90 years old, with the wines raised in used barrels from Burgundy. The wines are seen to have more parallels with Burgundian Pinot Noir than the commonplace ‘bubblegum’ wines of Beaujolais, with incredible aging potential as opposed to the regular vin de soif of many.