Though the current form of Domaine 3 Cellier is relatively young, the Cellier family can trace its history in Châteauneuf-du-Pape back eight generations. Brothers Ludovic, Julien, and Benoît took control of the estate from their father, Marc, in 2007. Ludovic’s wife, Nathalie, is also involved and manages the domaine.
They farm 10 varietals in 27 plots over nearly 15 hectares using lutte raisonnée. The vast majority are in Châteauneuf-du-Pape AOP. Four hectares are on the plate named “Terres Blanches,” located at the north of the appellation. Clay and limestone soil is covered with a thick layer of rolled pebbles. This plate is the highest point of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, so it receives ample daylight and wide diurnals, as the parcel faces cooling mistral winds, which also helps to reduce disease and mildew.
The estate is rightly proud of their close to 200 medals and awards racked up at tastings around the world over the past decade or so—in particular, the annual Féminalise competition. Based in Beaune, it is France’s only tasting judged solely by women.