Six Québec natural wine makers to try
Marc Théberge and his team at Bergeville have been improving their lineup of licensed natural and biodynamic traditional method bubbly for more than a decade. “We have 3 lines of gleaming,” Théberge states. “The festive line aims to be your favorite aperitif. The premium line is a line of shimmering that we established to accompany a meal. And, lastly, the ephemeral line, where we evaluate brand-new things. If they become crowd-pleasers, we fold them into the other lines of product. We have likewise been known to make the odd ancestral technique sparkling, which is frequently described as pét nat.”
Théberge has a special place in his heart for his un-disgorged productions, or wines that undergo secondary fermentation in the bottle and are left unfiltered, so the invested yeast, or lees, remains in the mix. “We motivate people to gently shake the bottle to put the lees in suspension prior to opening them,” he says. “The lees provide a texture similar to consuming a beer and supply some roundness without masking the fruit-forward style. These red wines are indicated to be drunk while they are young and vivacious.”
After sharpening his abilities in Niagara and the south of France, Zaché Hall and team kicked off their operation in 2018 by planting about six acres of vines in a patch of glacial sediment near Dunham. Nowadays, l’Espiègle’s fleet covers many varieties and styles of predominantly still red wines.
“We have Gamaret, which is a cross of Gamay from Switzerland. I mix it with Gamay, it’s very quaffable,” states Hall. “We likewise make a still blanc de noir of Meunier, which is impressively umami. I like it a lot, but as much as I hate to confess, our Chardonnay is likely our most intellectual wine.”
Starting a business atop a steep hillside, extremely intuitive wine makers Justine Thérrien and Julien Niquet put out a handful of unfiltered, organic head-turners that play well off the location’s unique topography and arrive bursting with personality. Their shimmering numbers stand out from the pack, specifically the Grape Brin, a velvety, semi-carbonated red made from a mix of Gamay and Blaufränkisch that shows an amazing toughness despite its diminutive 10.6% ABV.Farnham, Québec
Covering almost seven-and-a-half acres of sandy soil, this biodynamic powerhouse from Véronique Hupin and Michael Marler has actually been leading Quebec’s natural charge given that 2005. The landscape and microclimate is perfect for growing Chardonnay, as evidenced by the residential or commercial property’s growing 30-year-old vines, however the winery’s Pinot Gris, Seyval, Pinot Noir, and Zweigelt also hold their own. Les Pervenches is cherished for its skin-contact selections, consisting of standout orange white wines and a blush-red Chardonnay that macerates for eight months in terracotta jars.Magog, Québec Husband-and-wife group Frédéric Simon and Catherine Belanger have backed this splashy natural winery since 2011, converting 18 different grape varieties into what is extensively acknowledged as a few of the continent’s hippest natural wines.Thankfully, the juice lives up to the buzz. The lineup spans abundant, skin-contact bottles; layered reds exploding with Marquette, Frontenac Noir, and Petite Pearl; soft rosés; and even a spirited, apple-infused porch-pounder packaged in hand-labeled cans. Nothing’s off limits here as long as it promotes the mind and pleases the senses.Saint-Armand, Québec Pigeon Hill co-owners Manon Rousseau and Kevin Shufelt have been channeling their enthusiasm for environmentalism into every bottle that streams out of their modest Saint-Armand vineyard because 2008. They champion lesser-known hybrid grapes like Marquette,
which they introduced to
the region themselves, alongside cold-weather components like Frontenac. Don’t miss Le Mouton, an oak-aged, single-varietal red that capably showcases Marquette’s peppery abundance, and gets its name from the vineyard’s resident sheep that easily roam about the vines.Want more Thrillist? Follow us on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, TikTok, and Snapchat.