What does wine mean to you ?

VertdeVin - - Interview -

An­toine Medev­ille

Wine­maker and oe­nol­o­gist

Wine is for me first of all a long fam­ily his­tory since my fam­ily has been work­ing in wine for sev­eral gen­er­a­tions and I have al­ways lived in the vine­yards that my grand­fa­ther worked and my fa­ther put into farm­ing.

I fell in when my fa­ther made me taste a vin­tage Château

Yquem: it was a rev­e­la­tion for me! It has quickly be­come a pas­sion that gov­erns all my fam­ily life since it forces us to live to the rhythm of the sea­sons. Be­hind a bot­tle of wine, there is first the story of the men and women who pro­duce it, their hard work, with Mother Na­ture who rules ev­ery­thing and gives us some warn­ings with hail and frost.In this area, one must be hum­ble be­cause noth­ing is ever won un­til the har­vest.It is a lot of sat­is­fac­tion when we man­age to over­come all the haz­ards and pro­duce vin­tages like 2016 or 2009 and 2010.No vin­tage is the same, we never get bored. This is all the more true in my job as con­sult­ing oe­nol­o­gist that I make as many vini­fi­ca­tions in one year as other wine­mak­ers in a life­time.

Wine for me is also a field of ex­per­i­men­ta­tion: our an­ces­tors made wine em­pir­i­cally, I chose to study oenol­ogy and to have this lab­o­ra­tory of ad­vice to un­der­stand the sci­en­tific phe­nom­ena that pre­side over the elab­o­ra­tion of a wine and its con­ser­va­tion in time, and thus to be able to make the tech­niques evolve.

Wine is shar­ing through the mo­ments of con­vivi­al­ity that it gen­er­ates and the fierce dis­cus­sions it can gen­er­ate. I par­tic­u­larly like to drink wine with my friends, I choose bot­tles, I open them and I make them taste blind: fa­mous cas­tle bot­tles and bot­tles of lesser renown.

Wine is for me a jewel that I keep with much love in my cel­lar. I have bot­tles of the birth years of my chil­dren and it is a great plea­sure to be able to open them with them at ma­jor events. My last great emo­tion is a tast­ing of Yquem 1929 in par­al­lel with a bot­tle of Château Bois­son 1929 which be­longed to my grand­fa­ther:I was par­tic­u­larly sur­prised and very im­pressed by th­ese two sweet wines, in terms of fresh­ness. They were still very aro­matic, with fat and vol­ume, fi­nesse and a lot of ele­gance.Their are en­robed in slight notes of cof­fee with milk. The cork was in­tact and had al­lowed th­ese bot­tles to keep for al­most 90 years. It was a mag­i­cal mo­ment for me, full of emo­tion be­cause I had the im­pres­sion to go­ing back in time.

Jean-Luc Thunevin


An in­cred­i­ble des­tiny, if we look a lit­tle bit at what hap­pened since my ar­rival by chance in Saint-Emil­ion in 1984 and what fol­lowed as suc­ces­sions of» mir­a­cles «. Sell­ing wine at the ta­ble made me want to sell it in a shop, which led me to be­come a mer­chant, my trade as a trader made me want to make my own wine from my own vine­yard. Cre­ation of Va­lan­draud in 1991, the cat­e­gory of garage wine of the be­gin­ning which con­tin­ues by the rank­ing in 1er cru in 2012 then the an­swer to your ques­tion of what is the wine for me: it is a to­tal recog­ni­tion. To the ques­tion «last emo­tion of tast­ing? It’s rare for me to talk about my wine when I’m asked to talk about a great wine, but that’s a bit spe­cial. At the time of the cre­ation of Va­lan­draud 2004 a vin­tage so hard to elab­o­rate on, whose first com­ments by Parker and its sta­tus as en Primeur, made us cry, Murielle and me. And there, this week, and blind tast­ing at L’En­vers du dé­cor, this wine was so good that I said to my­self: fi­nally! it was worth the wait!

“it is a to­tal recog­ni­tion.”

Na­dia Curto


To say what wine is for me is not so sim­ple… it would be eas­ier to ask the op­po­site and say, para­phras­ing the great Ital­ian poet Mon­tale, what it’s not and what I don’t want it to be.

At first, wine I would like to be not a stan­dard­iza­tion of tastes, I would like it not to be a per­fect re­sult of chem­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing and de­nud­ing tech­nique, I’m not look­ing for cer­ti­tude, I don’t want the wine to be a cof­fin for the grapes.

Wine is an ex­pres­sion of love, is life, is joy. For me tech­ni­cal per­fec­tion is not the pri­or­ity but when I drink a wine I would like to sa­vor the life that lives in us.Wine is an en­ergy that em­pha­sizes our feel­ings. The wine that is made with the heart car­ries in it­self a story ev­ery year hav­ing a dif­fer­ent char­ac­ter in each vin­tage that is an ex­pres­sion of the weather, the soil, the cli­mate, the fruits and the crafts­man­ship.

Wine is a sur­prise and a pas­sion.

I am lucky to be born in a fa­mous area where the Neb­bi­olo grape yields ex­cel­lent re­sults sim­ply by ac­com­pa­ny­ing it and for us to carry on this tra­di­tion is a beau­ti­ful op­por­tu­nity that makes us proud. But we know that it is «just» a pas­sage … wine is mainly made from grapes and from the land and the wine like a chil­dren will car­ries on our his­tory in the fu­ture. Wine is a per­sonal ad­ven­ture.As a vint­ner, wine is a beau­ti­fully chore­ographed script that mother na­ture ne­glected to share, al­low­ing us to adapt with creativ­ity and cu­rios­ity.As a col­lec­tor, wine is an ex­plo­ration of bot­tled mo­ments in time best shared with friends. I don’t be­lieve the best wines have to pair with a white ta­ble cloth and a Miche­lin star to be re­mem­bered, rather I of­ten find the most gen­uine ex­pe­ri­ences to be un­ex­pected.When the per­fume of Sau­vi­gnon Blanc trans­ports you to a first date, or the rich­ness of Caber­net Sau­vi­gnon re­minds you of your first pro­mo­tion, that’s when wine tran­scends taste and cre­ates emo­tion. And this pur­suit is what in­spires us to this day. My last wine emo­tion ? Once we re­sumed har­vest af­ter the wild­fires, we pressed off our first tank of 2017 Es­tate Caber­net Sau­vi­gnon and raised a glass with sheer joy, and many laughs. I’ll re­mem­ber that mo­ment for­ever.

“Wine is an ex­pres­sion of love,

is life, is joy. ” “a beau­ti­fully chore­ographed


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