The Estate

Between the Rhône and Ventoux, a family estate on the heights of Sarrians.

the passion of a family estate

30 min from Orange and Avignon.

The estate is located on the Garrigue plateau, a renowned terroir of the Vacqueyras appellation, the estate’s main production.

Charles Carichon planted the first vines with his father Rémy, over 25 hectares of vines that were later classified in the famous Vacqueyras appellation. The oldest vines are located on the garrigue plateau where the cuvée “Les secrets de la licorne” (Secrets of the Unicorn) comes from, in reference to the history of the coat of arms.

The estate subsequently modernized and expanded from its initial 25 hectares to its current 70 hectares, adding other prestigious appellations such as Gigondas or Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Côtes-du-Rhône, Ventoux and Cairanne. A highly varied range of Rhône Valley crus, reds, whites and rosés, all vinified, matured and bottled at the Domaine.

After studying management and obtaining a bachelor’s degree in wine business at Montpellier Supagro, Edouard, the third generation to join the domaine, is now promoting his wines to a wide audience of professionals, amateurs and connoisseurs, in order to perpetuate the family know-how.

Famille Carichon

The vines are on average between 30 and 60 years old, with the exception of some Châteauneuf-du-Pape vines, replanted in 2000. The grape varieties grown are the traditional ones of the Rhône Valley: Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, but also Carignan, Cinsault, as well as Roussanne and Marsanne, Grenache blanc and Viognier for white wines.

There are up to 13 grape varieties in the Châteauneuf-du-Pape appellation. However, Grenache is so well known in our region, as is Syrah, that the traditional grape varieties (Grenache – Syrah – Mourvèdre) remain a safe bet. In fact, some appellations, such as Vacqueyras, require a certain proportion of these quality grape varieties in their specifications.

We combine different grape varieties that complement each other, such as Grenache and Syrah, to achieve a fine balance and singular harmony. While we vinify certain grape varieties separately to see the potential of each, we also blend the same terroir in vats (co-fermentation) so that the aromas can develop together and bring more complexity.

“Wine is the son of the sun and the earth”. Paul Claudel

Vines require special care. Suffering from disease, drought or simply old age, it needs to be replaced. The choice of grape varieties varies according to the nature of the soil. Some grape varieties, such as Marselan, are resistant to disease. This limits the need for treatments, which are increasingly used in our region. Small plants require constant care and regular watering. In periods of heatwave, adult vines resist better, thanks to a more developed root system. But if there is very little rainfall and the water table is not sufficient, they can also suffer from lack of water.

Vines also need organic matter and mineral elements, and soil analyses enable us to anticipate their needs and make up for any deficiencies. The main purpose of authorized treatments is to combat various diseases (downy mildew, oidium), which can significantly reduce harvests and, in the worst case scenario, even kill the vines. We are therefore vigilant about the upkeep of our vineyards. If we want vines to last a hundred years, it’s essential to treat them appropriately. The HVE approach takes stock of treatment products, so that we can keep those that are effective, while at the same time respecting people and the environment.

wine-making and ageing cellar

Domaine Brunely Foudres
Domaine Brunely Cuves Inox

While most of our efforts have been concentrated on growing the vines – as the winemaker reminds us, most of the wine is made in the vineyard – we have also developed our know-how with our oenologists, who advise us on the vinification and ageing of our wines.

For example, to extract the best aromatic compounds from the wine, we make 3 délestages for all our red wines: the fermenting wine is put aside in another vat, with the grapes remaining at the bottom of the vat. We then put the fermenting wine back on the grape skins that contain the color and aromas, so as to get more of them. During fermentation, we use micro-oxygenation. While over-oxygenation can oxidize wines, micro-oxygenation stabilizes color by polymerizing tannins and anthocyanins, making tannins more supple.

Once the red wine is finished, the grape skins are pressed to obtain the free-run juice. This is reincorporated with the rest of the vat. What remains, the marc, is sent to the distillery. Our pneumatic press applies slow pressure to the grape skins, producing high-quality free-run juice that is reincorporated into the vats.

We keep all our vats cold, with flags lowered into the vats and cooled by a stream of cold water inside. Cold temperatures allow fermentation to proceed more slowly, while higher temperatures cause the more volatile aromas to evaporate. Cold temperatures stabilize the wine, and less sulfur is used. Sulfur is an antiseptic, antioxidant and antibacterial agent. We use it sparingly, but its use is effective against any drift. We rack regularly, which keeps the wine clean.

To ensure that the wine is free of any micro-organisms that could lead to off-flavours, our wines are filtered on fine sterile plates, eliminating all bacteria and keeping the wine stable, thus allowing longer ageing. This process takes nothing away from the wine’s aromas.

Our wines are stored in air-conditioned rooms for better preservation. For bottling carried out on the estate, the air-conditioning in the room avoids excessive temperature differences with the outside. We also control the amount of dissolved oxygen in the bottle. Our bottling process evacuates the air from the bottle. The wine therefore receives little oxygen. Oxygenation continues slowly after bottling, through the cork. Over time, the tannins become more refined and the aromas silkier. Appellations such as Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Gigondas and Vacqueyras are made for laying down. In good years, they can be cellared for 5 to 10 years at the right temperature (15-20°C).

For special cuvées such as our Vacqueyras vieilles vignes “Les Secrets de la Licorne” or our Châteauneuf-du-Pape, we use a special ageing process: part of the wine (30-50%) remains in 225L French oak barrels for 8 to 12 months. We’ve observed that wines with significant structure, such as Vacqueyras or Châteauneuf-du-Pape, age better in barrels, as the fruity aromas don’t fade with the taste of wood. On the contrary, fine aromas with notes of vanilla or toasted wood are added to the wines. Our barrels are renewed on average every 3 years, beyond which time they no longer provide as many aromas. They are toasted at medium-high temperature, which favors vanillin (vanilla) or furfural (toast, caramel) aromas. We’re not looking for the woodiness that can be found in high toast barrels, with their characteristic whisky-lactone aromas.

In 2021, we invested in a terracotta amphora. We noticed that this opened up the wine, rounded out the tannins and gave us better aromas thanks to the continuous circulation of the lees through convection. In 2022, we bought 4 foudres. Often used in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, they bring less woody aromas, but a slow oxygenation that gives the wine more depth and complexity. In this way, the wine retains all its fruity aromas with additional flavors. The wine also benefits from micro-oxygenation through the wood.

“Drinking wine is drinking genius” Charles Beaudelaire

Did you know?
The cask was one of the major attractions at the World’s Fair, coming in second behind the Eiffel Tower, which won the competition!

Cellar opening hours

Monday to Friday

From 8h30 to 12h00 and from 14h00 to 17h30


On appointment

Our vineyard has been certified HVE Level III since 2019.



+33 4 90 65 41 24 / +33 6 67 00 84 86



1272 route de la Brunely
84260 Sarrians

Latitude : 44.083415
Longitude : 4.971544

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