At the age of 25, Benjamin Benoit has taken over his family domaine in Pupillin in 2020. This happened a bit quicker than anticipated due to his fathers passing in 2019. Thankfully, Benjamin had been working under some of our favorite winemakers in Burgundy. When tasting his wines, these past experiences clearly set him up for success. Charles Lachaux, Nicolas Faure, and Amélie Berthaut- how much have we spoken about the three of them in the past few years? A lot:) Which only made it natural for Benjamin to be our first official import.
When Speaking with Benjamin a few things stood out. First, he isn’t trying to make Nicolas’ Gamay or Amelie’s Fixin; he is trying to make site specific wine from his vineyards in Pupillin. He has pretty much revamped the way his father was doing it, bottling each vineyard and lieu-dit individually and highlighting the individual terroirs of the region; this is something that has not been done in the region. He has been in the process of moving his viticulture practices to organic and regenerative methods, supporting the growth of natural biodiversity in the vines. With only two vintages under his belt, it is going to take some time for Benjamin to be able to invest in fully transitioning the vineyards. Most of the vineyards are already treated by hand without the use of tractors or hedging. Plowing is very minimal to limit the soil compaction to support microbial life. He has transitioned from curved guyot to keeping his canes flat and straight to give more space between the canopy in order to curve disease pressure. He works all of his vineyards by hand and makes his own fertilizers. Trimming is done very late in July. Each plot has 1.3m between rows and is 7000 vines/ha, except Viandris 1938, which is at 1m and plowed by horse. His vineyards look beautiful already, full of organic life with natural cover crops filling in the vines.
Benjamin is currently farming 6.2ha of vines, but only producing 4ha worth of wine due to space in the winery. A new one is under way and will hopefully bring all 6ha to us in bottle by 2022.