The Domaine de Guillaman is a wine estate that lies in Gascony on hillsides and has been in the Ferret family for six generations.
A passion for the grape has long run in the family: Albert Ferret, the fourth-generation owner, passed on his own devotion to his grand-son Dominique, on an estate that had hitherto been entirely dedicated to the making of armagnac.
Dominique, who was equally passionate and was also proud to be able to maintain the fine family history, took over the management of the property from a very young age, and decided to change direction in choosing to make high-quality white wines. These are marketed as Côtes de Gascogne, which now enjoy a protected geographical status.
To do this, Dominique re-vamped entirely the existing 20 hectares of vines, increased the area under cultivation and renovated the wine-making cellar. These major works took more than ten years.
The vines, now extended to 125 hectares (309 acres) by a series of acquisitions, benefit from the richness of a typically Gascon clayey soil on a limestone bed-rock, while a mild maritime climate helps the grapes to reach a good level of ripeness.
The grape varieties are predominantly white, in part as they were ones used for making armagnac: Colombard, Ugni Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Gros Manseng and Petit Manseng make up 80% of the vines.
The remaining 20%, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, are used to make rosé and red wines.