Guillaume Durand and Alban Thouroude
23.5 acres owned (18.5 acres Jacquère for Apremont and Brut, 2.5 acres Altesse for Roussette, 2.5 acres Chardonnay) and nearly 26 acres leased (nearly 21 acres Jacquère, 1.3 acres Altesse, and 3.7 acres Gamay and Mondeuse for reds and rosé). The well-exposed, south/southeast-facing hillside vineyards are situated on the lower slopes of Mont Granier and are dominated by stony, clay/limestone soils. Grapes are also purchased as needed. Sustainably grown. Vines average 40+ years of age.Yields of 4.5 tons/acre.
Pierre Boniface wines are produced at Les Rocailles, a true earthly paradise nestled in the French Alps. When Pierre took over from his father he had a modest business, farming 20 acres and buying grapes from another 20 on handshake deals. Les Rocailles is now one of the biggest and best producers in Savoie, with nearly 50 acres owned and grapes purchased from nearly 60 more! Apremont is the signature wine, accounting for 70% of the production.
Growers like Pierre usually look forward to passing their domains on to their children, but in this case, it was just not meant to be. His daughter Miriam is a computer systems architect (who recently interrupted her doctoral studies to get an MBA from Wharton) and his son is literally a rocket scientist (with a PhD in ballistics, he now works on jet engine design for Pratt & Whitney). Pierre subsequently sold the business to Guillaume Durand and Alban Thouroude, two young men (born and bred in Savoie) with MBA’s from the University of Grenoble. All of the winery/vineyard staff has stayed on, and Pierre will continue to actively consult for 5 years.
Pierre Boniface is a cornerstone of the HPS portfolio. The wines represent great values, and are a revelation to those unfamiliar with wines from Savoie. Press (Parker, The Wine Advocate, The New York Times, more…) has been stellar and just keeps on coming, with recent features in The Wine Spectator and Martha Stewart Living on XM radio.