Our switch to biodynamic happened naturally. The vines were already cultivated in organic wine-making by Christian Leperchois since the 1990s. First grown without certification, we obtained the European organic certification ECOCERT later in 1997 to guarantee a complete engagement to our clients around the entire world.
When Fabien, Christian’s son, joined the domain in 2006, he was convinced of the benefits of biodynamic culture after having worked in and observed other vineyards. Right away, Fabien led the vineyard’s conversion into biodynamic. The domain received the international Demeter certification in 2009.
Fabien did his studies in the vines and wine in order to become a superior technician. He did several internships for fellow producers in the region, and accompanied many in converting to organic. He had been vineyard manager and Maître de Chai with different winegrowers. He is a convinced biodynamist thanks to observing plant life at various French and international vineyards. He learned to watch and understand nature and biodynamic farming. Fabien also has discussed a lot with other biodynamic practitioners. He is also an in-demand consultant for fellow winemakers in France and the United States.
Biodynamic is an agriculture based on principles developed by Rudolf Steiner at the beginning of the 20th century.
Biodynamic goes much farther than organic viticulture:
- Less inputs used in the vineyard, including reducing the use of copper and sulphur;
- The only preparations other than sulphur and copper are natural (e.g., plant infusions, silica, horn manure);
- Little to no inputs used during vinification (e.g., little to no sulphur);
- The biodynamic philosophy is similar to homeopathy: bring plant infusions to the vines to reinforce them and their natural defenses as a preventative solution;
- Pay attention to the environment to identify the ideal moments to treat the vines (e.g., weather forecasts, observing life and lunar calendar);
- Everything is natural, thus little to no risk to human beings (e.g., winegrowers, maîtres de chai, consumers);
- A focus on the health and strength of the plant, soil as well as biodiversity;
- A long-term vision, which gives the best attention to the vegetation, fruit, vines and wines!
- As with the greatest chefs, for whom the secret to a great recipe are good ingredients, a good wine is first and foremost good grapes to us;
- Preserving and valuing the earth’s balance. A terroir can’t create itself, which is why it is important to respect it, the earth and its quality in order to not impoverish it.
- 500P is horn manure, which develops the ground. It is a very nutritional compost that is applied to soil to stimulate the roots and nourish supportive underground life. Root growth is a major element to the health and quality of vines. Applying horn manure stimulates microbial life, which is required to provide natural reserves during winter to the vine stocks;
- We also spread 501, also known as silica quartz, on foliage to help the plants capture light intensity, a source of heat and the moonlight. This supports photosynthesis.
Biodynamic farming allows us to combine forces of nature with the fingerprints of our wine-grower. This is our philosophy.