Elizabeth and I visited Sophie and Matthieu in May of 2016, where we turned a 90-minute visit into a four-hour fan club meeting. It's easy to do. Not only is La Croix Montjoie stunningly beautiful, but Sophie and Matthieu are truly good people dedicated to a life-changing idea.
Their wines show it.
When Sophie and Matthieu founded Croix Montjoie about 8 years ago, they were recent viticultural school graduates with two young children and an uncle that believed in their vision. After purchasing some dilapidated buildings near the hilltop town of Vezelay, they cobbled together a few hectares of vines, and with their own hands began a renovation that was completed in just four years. Consider me jealous! La Croix Montjoie sits atop a bluff overlooking the Yonne valley and the hilltop town of Vezelay. It is one of those places where upon completion of your visit you make a beeline for the nearest realtor's office just to "poke around." They farm only 10 hectares here.
Now if your idea of great Chardonnay is something that resembles butterscotch-coated lamp oil, please move along. But, if you prefer the minerally, laser beam dry, voluptuous kind--you're back in Kansas, Dorothy. Their Chardonnay is both elegant and well-rounded. I would stack it up against a Premier Cru Chablis or village level Meursault. Happily. And probably have enough savings to buy a 3-pack!
Croix Montjoie works mostly work with Chardonnay, but when a friend asked them to farm a 1 hectare (2.2 acres) parcel of Pinot for them, they jumped on it. They made only a few hundred cases and will sell most from their winery and to local restaurants. I'm happy to receive about 12 cases each year.
When I first met Sophie and Matthieu, I was immediately struck by both them and their wines--pure, graceful, elegant. My mind wasn't changed since then. As Elizabeth and I drove away we both just sat in the car silently smiling at each other, too content for words.