Domaine Ganevat

Jura, France

Also known as Fanfan, Ganevat’s wines have become iconic, and symbol of an entire generation of young natural winemakers. His family line of vignerons and Estate date back to the 17th century. After years working in Burgundy, Jean-François returned back to his roots in Jura where, in 1998, took over his family’s Estate. That same year, he converted the vineyards to organic viticulture, and then to biodynamics in 2006. Based in Rotalier, Jura, the Estate is only 8.5 hectares and the yields are low. Jean-François practices single-parcel selection ( 1 soil type, 1 grape variety = one cuvée). As a result, the estate gives birth to 40+ different, extraordinary, and very rare cuvées every year.

2017 was a catastrophe in the Jura, the region was hit by a terrible frost, and Ganevat lost 95% of their vines. This is when François and his sister Anne decided to start the négoce and spread their net further.  

Organic, Biodynamic and Natural wine. What’s the difference?

To understand this concept and its various ramifications, it is necessary to keep something clear in mind: before the 20th century and the spreading of affordable synthetic fertilisers, all farming was organic. When the shift to the use of synthetics and pesticides happened, it became necessary to diversify traditional organic farming from the new modern farming. 


Simply put, organic farming forbids the use of synthetic fertilisers, synthetic pesticides, herbicides, or genetically modified organisms. The basic requirements are generally specific and engage the farmers not to use any chemical fertilisers and other synthetic products in the vineyard. It does not prevent the vintner from using the conventional winemaking process after harvesting. 


Let’s take organic farming one step further: Biodynamic. The creator of this agricultural system is the Austrian philosopher Rudolf Steiner, who developed the principles of biodynamics in a series of lectures given in 1924 in Germany. Here lies the foundation of true organic wines, with a strict limit in the use of additives, stringent requirements and at the end obtaining a biodynamic certification.


The previous definitions are usually, and rightfully, associated with it, because most natural wine is also organic and/or biodynamic. But not vice versa!

Natural wine is wine in its purest form, simply described as nothing added, nothing taken away, just grapes fermented. No manipulation whatsoever, minimal intervention both in the vineyards and in the winery. Healthy grapes, natural yeast and natural fermentation, with no filtration nor fining. Sounds easy, right? However, making natural wine is unforgiving and it requires a bigger amount of work than conventional wine. To this day, natural wine has no certification yet.