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  • THE HISTORY OF OUR ESTATE
  • THE ESTATE TODAY
  • WINEGROWING
  • VINIFICATION
   
The history of our estate  
   
The names Colonat and Collonge originate from the word “colon”. When families first settled in the region, their task was to work a plot of land, a type of cultivation called “colonat” in French (farming leasehold).
An ancient Roman road connecting Rome with Boulogne sur Mer, a very important axis at the time of the Roman Empire, crosses through our vineyards.


The oldest texts referring to vines in our region date back as far as 957. Thanks to extremely favourable conditions such as the nature of the soil and the exposition of the hillsides, vines have always been grown and cultivated in this area, notwithstanding periods of crises, wars and diseases.
The wines of Domaine de Colonat were quickly sold beyond the limits of the region, especially in Lyon, the closest city.


Later on with the development of fluvial transportation, the Morgon was taken directly to the capital city of Paris. Thus, Louis XIII and Louis XIV enjoyed their meals with wines from our area.

Ever since 1828, when Claude Collonge, a former farrier, bought the current estate, seven generations of winegrowers, from father to son, have succeeded one another.


The current winemakers are Christine and Bernard, who have been cultivating the Domaine de Colonat since 1977. After specialised studies in the field and time spent working abroad, their son Thomas has joined the family estate.
     
     

   
The estate today  
   
Our vineyards are spread over six villages and the two départements Rhône and Saône-et-Loire.

We produce seven appellations from just one single grape variety, the Gamay noir à jus blanc (Black Gamay with white juice): Morgon, Fleurie, Moulin à Vent, Chiroubles, Regnie, Beaujolais-Villages rosé and red.

As artisan winemakers we look after all aspects of the winemaking process: the cultivation of our vines, the vinification as well as selling the final product.

You will discover our passion inside each and every one of our bottles. Our best ambassadors in France and all over the world are sommeliers, restaurateurs, wine merchants, importers, connoisseurs, wine professionals and simply wine lovers.

Numerous medals in different competitions as well as articles and quotations in wine guides each year confirm the constant high quality of our wines.
     
     

Christine COLLONGE

Bernard COLLONGE

Thomas COLLONGE

   
Winegrowing  
   
The planting density at Domaine de Colonat is 10,000 vine stocks per hectare, one of the highest in the world.

Though extremely interesting for quality reasons, such a high number of vine stocks is very labour-intensive, even more so as mechanisation is nearly impossible.


Many winegrowers today tend to reduce their planting density in order to cut down production costs. With quality as our priority, we do not.

Covering plants are maintained in the majority of our vineyards and mowed two or three times per year.

Yield control is very important as the production of high volumes dilutes the potential of the vine.

On the other hand, low yields do not necessarily lead to a great wine, but frequently bring about imbalances. Controlled pruning is therefore necessary in order to strike the right balance.
     
     

   
Vinification  
   
Our facilities are very efficient.

Cleanliness is a constant concern. The grape harvest is exclusively carried out by hand.

We apply classical Burgundy-style vinification methods.
The grapes are destemmed. The fermentations are long and rigorously temperature-controlled.

We opt for a prolonged maceration time in order to extract the full potential of each single grape.

Each vintage is unique.

An entire part of the wine is made without us: much work during the vinification process is done instinctively.

We do not pretend to revolutionise our methods, but strive to continuously improve our know-how.