More often than ever, wine growers no longer have their feet firmly planted in the ground, or more exactly in their soil. They seem to be too busy wandering throughout the world, spreading the good word. Today's "great wine growers" are top managers, experts in marketing. Sometimes they are merely investors. Most of the time and at best, they are executive managers, giving instructions to those in charge of the actual growing, wine cellar owners who discover their wine once it is bottled and finished.
We are light-years away from this approach.
Being a wine grower, for us, is by no means a job like any other: it is closer to a vocation, a devouring passion that calls upon an intimate connection with the vines.
How can we convert into wine the grapes if we have not tended them all year ?
How can we assess the strengths and weaknesses of a vintage if we have not felt the climatic variations with its ups and downs ?
How can we best choose the best winemaking process if we don't know how those grapes grew and developed ?
How can we improve growing methods if we don't know the kind of impact they will have on the wine ?
Being a wine grower means knowing one's vineyard by heart: knowing every individual vine, feeling the stress of a drought like in 2003 or the rains of 2002, as if we were the plant itself.
Being a wine grower is having both feet deeply rooted in one's land, in its very soil, feeling what the vine feels, and adapting the winemaking process to the different fruits.
Being a wine grower is not applying scientific methods blindly : the heart of wine growing is man, with his instinct, passion, intuition, and improvisation.
This is perhaps the main difference between wines that are technically perfect and wines that have a soul.
Wine growing is one of the rare activities in the world in which it is not necessary to be a huge corporation to be well-known. On the contrary, we can remain small craftsmen and propose unique wines in small quantities, for a clientele of passionate wine lovers who don't care for standard products but who seek wines with a genuine character, a powerful identity.
We don't wish to be liked by everyone, but we do strive to remain and assert who we are...