Baptiste and Clémence Dubrulle at Domaine de la Folie in Burgundy.

he northernmost tip of the Rully appellation is to a large extent the territory of one single domaine. This is where you will find Domaine de la Folie with its three monopoles – Clos la Folie, Clos du Chaigne and Clos St Jacques, all within walking distance from the winery.

– It is definitely an advantage to have all our vineyards so close. At harvest this means the grapes arrive very quickly at the cuverie. But then again, if we have hail or frost all our vineyards are affected, says Baptiste Dubrulle.

Domaine de la Folie has been in the family for the past two centuries, but it wasn’t until 2010 that Baptiste and his wife Clémence arrived at the domaine. It was her great-great-grandfather, Étienne-Jules Marey, a well-known scientist, physiologist and chronophotographer, who brought Domaine de la Folie to life.

Domaine de la Folie in Chagny, Burgundy.– We are the first winegrowers of the family to actually live at the domaine, explains Clémence Dubrulle. My father bought it, almost by accident, back in 1989. Originally it was his brother who was supposed to take on the domaine, but he messed up things quite a bit, so my father stepped in. My father decided to keep his job in Paris and have somebody else to deal with the day-to-day operations.

– In 2010, just after I had met my husband, I felt it was time to decide what to do with the domaine. It was a now or never situation. We decided to leave Paris and move here.

Rully, Clos du Chaigne, Burgundy.Domaine de la Folie covers 12.5 hectares. The main building sits at the top of a slope overlooking Clos la Folie and the town of Chagny. 60 per cent of the domaine is white and 40 per cent is red. All the vineyards are within the Rully appellation, even the parcels in Clos la Folie planted with aligoté. But since it’s aligoté the wine from these parcels may only be sold as Bourgogne Aligoté.

– When we arrived here in 2010 the situation was complicated, explains Baptiste Dubrulle. The person in charge had had too much to do. Financially it was complicated. Some old clients remained. The quality of the wine was not what we wished for. The equipment was old and there were no personnel. All in all it took us two years to have everything sorted.

The main part of the Rully appellation is around the village of Rully. To the north it spills over into to the commune of Chagny.

View over Chagny, Burgundy.– Rully is quite heterogenous, says Clémence Dubrulle. You have limestone all across the appellation, but the parts are still quite different. It is also an appellation where the average age of the growers is quite low, which is nice.

Clos la Folie is village appellation Rully. It is a monopole covering not quite two hectares. 1.97 ha to be exact, out of which 0.60 ha is planted with aligoté.

– The vineyard is north-northeast-facing, says Baptiste Dubrulle. We try to preserve the freshness this brings to the wine by only using tanks for the élevage.

Rully, Clos du Chaigne, Burgundy.– Here at La Folie we don’t use much oak, says Clémence Dubrulle. We’d like to focus on the terroir. The barrels are for the micro-oxidation, not for the oak flavours.

– Yes, says Baptiste Dubrulle, as Clémence says, we don’t want to a wine which is marked by wood. We work with coopers who make barrels where the wood is delicate and becomes well-integrated in the wine.

The aligoté vines inside Clos la Folie are 80 years old. Because of the high age the Dubrulles plan to uproot them and replace them with chardonnay in a not too distant future.

Baptiste and Clémence Dubrulle at Domaine de la Folie in Burgundy.– It’s aligoté doré, which produces a more elegant aligoté, says Baptiste Dubrulle. The aligoté is considered to be a lesser grape variety. But I think it deserves better, because the development on the technical side of the winemaking has really improved the aligoté. It’s not a particularly complex wine, but with certain dishes, like seafood or some cheeses, it works very well.

Southeast of the winery is Clos de Chaigne, one of the two Rully premier cru monopoles of the domaine. This clos covers 3.26 hectares and the chardonnay vines have an average age of 50 years. Élevage is in barrels, but with only 20 per cent new oak.

– For the time being all one single cuvée, says Baptiste Dubrulle. But the bottom half of Clos de Chaigne is clay and limestone. The top half is much more clay. It would be interesting to make two different cuvées.

Rully, Clos Saint Jacques, Burgundy.The other Rully premier cru monopole, Clos St Jacques is closer to the winery, just east of the main gates. Here the chardonnay vines are considerably older, between 80 and 90 years old, but in terms of vinification and élevage it is the same as for Clos de Chaigne.

– There is a Clos St Jacques in Gevrey-Chambertin as well, smiles Baptiste Dubrulle. But that one is red and the price tag is something completely different. Here in the Côte Chalonnaise we still make consumer products. Affordable wines, made for drinking, not for speculation. The price range is ten to 25 euros.

– Clos St Jacques is elegant with a subtle delicateness. Clos de Chaigne is more about opulence and power.

The two reds of Domaine de la Folie – Clos de Bellecroix and Cuvée Marey – come from the same premier cru, the Clos de Bellecroix just below Clos la Folie.

– The full name of the cuvée is Cuvée Marey du Clos de Bellecroix, says Baptiste Dubrulle. It comes from the part of Clos de Bellecroix which is facing east. The rest of Clos de Bellecroix is facing north-northeast. Thanks to the difference in orientation the Cuvée Marey has a richness you don’t find in the Clos de Bellecroix, which is a more immediate wine.

© 2018 Ola Bergman