The creation of Domaine Henri Gouges was the culmination of 400 years of family grape farmers, and it is, in many minds, the top domaine in Nuits-Saint-Georges. Henri formed the domaine in 1920 but was soon discouraged with selling the fruit to négociants. He envisioned a better quality wine, and by 1933 he was producing, bottling, and selling directly. He, along with the Marquis d’Angerville from Volnay, was at the forefront of battles against fraud in Burgundy in the 1920s. In the 1930s, Monsieur Gouges was one of the people charged with the job of delineating the crus in Burgundy for the Institut National d’Appellation d’Origine, and he was a member of that regulatory body at its outset.
Since the beginning, the domaine has remained an undivided family property. In 1967, Henri’s two sons, Michel and Marcel, succeeded him and added to the holdings of the estate. Each of them handed leadership over to one of their sons to bring the domaine to the next stage. Pierre and Christian began the modernization of the vineyards and the winery, which they have now turned over to Pierre’s son, Gregory, and his cousin, Antoine. While the house style has evolved, the main focus is the better reflection of the terroir in the fruit through organic viticulture. They believe that healthy vines produce quality fruit and thus more expressive terroir-driven wines.
Located in the heart of the Cote d’Or in the village of Nuits-Saint- Georges, Domaine Henri Gouges consists of 36 acres of vineyards. The 30 acres of Premier Cru vineyards has remained unchanged since the 1930s. Apart from a Bourgogne Rouge and Blanc and the Nuits-Saint-Georges Villages, there are seven Premiers Crus: Les Saint-Georges, Les Chaignots, Chênes Carteaux, Clos des Porrets-Saint-Georges, Les Pruliers, and Les Vaucrains, plus the white La Perrière from a mutated Pinot Noir that Henri Gouges noticed growing in 1936 within Clos-des-Porrets and subsequently propagated. The Clos de Porrets-Saint-Georges is a nearly 9-acre triangular monopole in Prémeaux that was a former quarry. The parcel in Les Saint-Georges consists of 2.5 acres that was planted in 1961 and is located towards the southern end of the appellation. The soil here contains limestone debris over Bathonian limestone bedrock. The Les Pruliers comes from two parcels totaling over 4.5 acres planted in 1960.