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Cellier de la Baraterie — Julien Viana

The ancient Savoyard commune of Cruet is not only breathtakingly beautiful, but is also recognised by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Here, Julien Viana organically cultivates not only vines, but also corn, wheat, buckwheat and sunflowers, to pursue the path of polyculture while making minimal intervention wine.

"I don’t want to wait 10 or 15 years to drink a wine. That’s not my personal philosophy."

People:  Julien Viana

Place:  Cruet, Savoie, France

Varieties:  Mondeuse, Pinot Noir and Gamay for the reds, and Altesse (also known as Roussette de Savoie), Jacquère, Chardonnay and Malvasia for the whites

Hectares:  5 hectares for the vines, and 50 hectares for grains and sunflowers

Farming:  Organic 

Wines: Click here

Did You Know? Julien worked at a local domaine in the Savoie, and then at the organic Château de Marrans in Beaujolais, where he was introduced to a more natural style of winemaking. 

“For me, wine began as a passion – I made some microvinifications to learn more, and just because I loved the process of turning fruit juice into wine.” 

Then, partly through tasting with other winemakers and listening to their methods, and from carrying out his own trials, he’s developed several cuvées over the years. He muses,

“You learn a lot just by doing, and so every year the wines get better and better. You get to know your vineyards and your cellar more with every year that goes by. Everything becomes a little more familiar, and that helps you to learn.”

"At first, I left the natural cover crop in the vineyard. But I’ve realised it’s not always ideal for viticulture… As human beings we can interfere and help the vineyard to be healthier by sowing seeds to grow beneficial plants. So, I began with choosing some certain local plants to focus on. The goal is to bring a lot of organic matter to the soil. Many of the plants that appear spontaneously don’t fulfil that role. Rather, plants like clover (and why not sunflowers?) provide...

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