Domaine Pichard is a family-run vineyard with a long history.
4th Century: Romans settle in the region and begin the long tradition of winemaking in this area.
12th Century: The Madiran Wine becomes known as Preacher’s Wine.
14th Century: The local wine travels the globe – exported to Northern Europe, Germany and the Netherlands.
1948: Auguste Vigneau – one of the three founding fathers of Madiran appellation – founds Domaine Pichard.
1948: White wines in Madiran become recognised as appellation Pachernc du Vic Bilh controlée, and red wines became classified as appellation Madiran controlée.
It takes a very special location to make wines with so much character and strength. The vineyard stretches across 23 hectares of compact steep rolling hillside; a mosaic of southward facing vines opposite the Pyrénées mountain range. The location of the vineyard is perfectly suited to take advantage of the local climate. The wine makers’ dream. The vineyard is entirely surrounded by glorious oak trees and woodlands providing natural buffers and thereby protecting the vineyard and reinforcing the necessary organic processes. The topsoil is composed of fine clays mixed with large stone pebbles shaped over time with quartz molds, quartzites and lydiennes dating back to the quarternaire era. This ensures optimal drainage as the grapes bask in the sun, retaining the heat well into the cool evening. Irrigation occurs naturally and comes from a network of natural water sources dissimulated across the vineyard. These are optimal conditions for these powerful wines.
Domaine Pichard is the only domaine in the Madiran appellation where all of the vines are together and south-facing opposite the Pyrénées mountain chain.
The vineyard’s wines may be savored young or laid down for 20 years or more, depending on the vintage.
The vineyard’s red wines are best served with duck, poultry, pork, game, wild boar, venison, red meat and fish.
The estate’s white wines – Pacherenc du Vic Bilh – are produced from two grapes: Petit Manseng and Gros Manseng grapes. The white grapes are grown in the coolest areas of the vineyard. The proportion of acidity, minerality, low sugar content and notes of exotic fruits makes for a range of dry and sweet white wines which are both subtle and well-balanced.
The minerality and freshness of the dry white Pacherenc is a perfect match as an aperitif or to accompany a plate of cured ham, a seafood platter or oysters and shellfish. The sweeter Pacherenc du Vic Bilh is a must traditionally with foie gras, desserts and either blue cheese or goats’ cheese.
Grapes grown: Tannat, Cabernet Franc, Petit Manseng and Gros Manseng.