Richard and Stephane Martin
Richard and Stephane Martin
The 26 hectares of the estate are shared between a mosaic of almost 60 different plots of vines that are part of the "Grand Site de France" of Solutré – Pouilly – Vergisson. The vines, with an average age of 40 years old, are exclusively of the Chardonnay grape variety. Most of these plots face the rising sun on gentle slopes that extend from the eastern faces of Solutré and Vergisson.
The soil is marly chalk from the middle and upper Jurassic period. With this in alteration is clayey silt that can be carried along the slopes by rainwater. When this happens the soil is quite shallow and mainly chalky at the top of the slope and deeper and more clayey at the bottom.
The name Domaine de la Croix Senaillet is taken from the name of the cross bestowed upon the village of Davayé by one of its past mayors; Benoît Senaillet. Record has it that Benoit Senaillet donated this cross to this vine growing village in 1866 to replace one that was destroyed in 1793 during the french revolution. Tradition has it that since its blessing in 1867, Croix Senaillet has protected the people of the village and all those who pass by it on their way. All the estate’s plots of vines are set around the cross on the slopes of the village. It is interesting to note that Benoit Senaillet was a contemporary of the poet lamartine who lived at the entry to the village.
Domaine de la Croix Senaillet is in southern burgundy, in Davayé, in the very heart of the Mâconnais cru area. This little village close by to Mâcon, to the west of the Saône river, is steeped in history. In actual fact the estate is right near the famous prehistoric site of solutré. The climb up this spur of rock that is 492 metres above sea-level gives a wide ranging view over villages and the rolling vine-covered Mâconnais hills.
Maurice Martin settled in Davayé and then fully devoted his life to the vines from 1969. Due to his unfailing doggedness, a really strong character, with his wife and family to back him up, without whom nothing would have been possible, the family estate slowly grew. Today it covers a unique stretch of 60 plots of vines with an average age of around 30 years old on all the slopes of the village.
After training hard at ground level his sons, Richard and Stéphane Martin, took over the estate in 1992, bringing with them new blood, new ideas and a single watchword; quality.
Stéphane’s responsibility is the vines, he allows the soils and terroir to come through and give of their best, resulting in grapes that are of the finest that the Saint-Véran Cru appellation can give. Under impetus given by Richard, the cellarage, which was built in 1989, was modernised in 2000-2002, then in 2007-2008.