Our vines were cultivated organically for centuries, benefitting from natural, empirically tested techniques, including manual hoeing. Yet two world wars and disease undermined activity throughout the Jura wine region, and sadly did not spare our plots, forcing our ancestors to adopt a mixed crop-livestock farming system. Our parents returned to exclusive winegrowing in the 1970s with the advent and development of agricultural chemistry, which for a time reigned absolutely, and which our parents likewise practised.
As the three of us reached adulthood, we quickly realised that weedkillers and other chemical sprays were in no way conducive to the production of good wines. It was therefore against our father’s advice that when we took over the estate in 1990, we decided to re-employ forgotten techniques by adopting the methods of Léandre, our grandfather, who in his day had no other choice than to come to terms with all that mother nature offered or threw at him. Thus we began experimental thermal weed control, tillage, and the gradual reduction of strong chemicals (anti-rot, insecticides, acaricides).
We had taken a stance, and our meetings with Yves Hérody, a geologist, then Pierre Masson, a consultant and trainer in biodynamics, gradually led to our being tempted by organic farming, and setting biodynamics as our ultimate goal.
In 1998, our vines received their first biodynamic preparations. Very quickly, the results were encouraging; the vines seemed to come back to life and the quality of the grapes they yielded was excellent. From one year to the next we have learned, progressed and improved, whilst also training the staff who support us in the rows of vines that have become increasingly productive.
Since 2002, the entire vineyard, which now amounts to 13 hectares (32 acres) of productive vines, has been cultivated biodynamically and the supreme accolade, obtaining Demeter certification, took place in 2003.
Over the years, the vineyard has grown thanks to the patient acquisition of land adjoining our existing plots. Our vines are now all located within the boundaries of the village, near our cellars.
In 1986, to enable us to work in a more efficient winery, we acquired the “Lacuzon cellar” located in the heart of the village, near our historic cellar “la Cave des Chartreux”, in which we continue to age our wines that mature under a veil of yeast.