Fabrice Domercq and Jasper Morrison had nothing to do with the winegrowing profession... and yet! One an artist from Paris, the other an industrial designer from London, they have been at the head of Ormiale since 2007, a small estate on the heights of Saint-Emilion, from where they are restoring the reputation of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon with resolutely modern wines, with careful aesthetics and a disconcerting depth...
|Cultivated grapes||Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon...|
|Our favorites||Ormiale, James|
Parisian, artist, designer and having lived in Milan for a long time, nothing in the world would have led Fabrice Domercq to become a winegrower... in Bordeaux. However, it was there that he launched himself, with his friend Jasper Morrison, in 2007, on an estate in the Entre-Deux-Mers region south of St-Émilion.
The story begins a few years earlier, when Fabrice's mother, Michèle, was looking for a country house to spend her old days in. Her search led her by chance to Bordeaux, where, in 2006, she came across an old farmhouse next to an old winery. The property included a few plots of vines, until then cultivated for the region's cooperative cellar, and this was all it took to arouse Fabrice's curiosity and overflowing ambition. It was decided that he would make wine!
With the help of his lifelong friend, Jasper, he set up the crazy project of making natural wine in Bordeaux. Ormiale? A contraction of the first names of Fabrice and his partner Caroline's children, Igor, Mailo, Alexandre and Achile.
In addition to the Ormiale cuvée from 2007, a 100% Merlot cuvée, in stainless steel, the aptly named Merlotinox, the sparkling rosé James in 2015, and other more confidential wines such as Spéciale, Pressé and Mariole, have been added over the years, giving free rein to Fabrice's overflowing imagination. The grapes are de-stemmed by hand, the vinification is done without inputs and the maturation is controlled. The wines shine with depth and complexity, carried by a mineral freshness and a silky touch.
In 2021, the dream of a lifetime came true, the cellar was moved to the heart of the old village of Saint-Emilion, in an old quarry. A real jewel for shaping and maturing the wines and a playground that will allow Fabrice to experiment again and again, with whites, cuvées in "dames-jeannes", new grape varieties... to be continued!
From his past as an artist, Fabrice has kept all the sensitivity and the concern of doing things well. At Ormiale, everything is done by hand, from the bottling of the more confidential vintages to the waxing of the bottles, including the labelling or the wrapping of the bottles, one by one, in tissue paper. Thus, each bottle is like a work of art in itself, inviting both contemplation and tasting.
On the first vintage of James, their sparkling wine, in 2015, the inscriptions on the label are arranged in such a way that if you look at it from the side, you think you can see the silhouette of the dome of Milan, the city so dear to Fabrice. Because every little detail counts.