Tuesday, June 9, 2009


Michel Bettane and François Mauss commented on my blog in respond to my (sad) mood post "politically incorrect". They are not the only ones reading my blog and as I returned from Japan, in much better shape - physically - and mentally, I will try to refine and explain my point.
Again, I will disappoint Patrick Essa or some of my other friends, but unfortunately (or too bad), journalists and I have a beautiful love story.
In fact, I would be nothing without them.

Who made me a “kinglet” in the wine microcosm, if not Michel Bettane who was the first with his special selections repeatedly given to me in the 90s in the en primeur section of the Revue du Vin de France. Then Robert Parker and even Jean Marc Quarin when he started. The Japanese newspaper Brutus had a considerable influence shortly after and along journalists – critics and other media created a buzz around Valandraud and garage wine. The magazine L'Express had skyrocketed the notoriety of my story, and television with TFI, France 2 and even M6 listed Valandraud as an "unavoidable" wine, equal or even above well established icons, that, at the time, were a bit asleep at the wheel (or even a lot).

Having said that knowing that one does not bite the hand that feeds him, that recognition is the least I can do and the feelings of gratitude that I can and must have to those who “made” me. Don’t I also have the right (me, who is so often judged) to give my opinion on my judges, even if I fell depressed?

When the new critics of RVF ignore our wines from the Roussillon this year, when still in the RVF, I read "easy to approach" to describe Valandraud and when I see the evolution of Dupont’s taste who, despite his knowledge of Valandraud wrote in the magazine Le Point "powerful wine that no one knows how it will evolve" (he tasted my wines blind over several vintages). It is certain that everyone’s tastes may not be the same and that all have preconceived judgment like "you belong to this family of upstarts I do not like ..." "you're an historical wine and I like your class and elegance ...!
Of course Michel, I was letting off steam by writing about critics. But Michel, I can not accept as a fact, and thereby deny who I am, when you write "there are no new great terroirs: Didn’t you see the geological map – certainly a bit unknown - of Saint-Emilion, where the area of Saint Etienne de Lisse is rather spoiled, and in much better position than some of the first growths from 1855!
How can you not believe in the Roussillon where a group of young talents with different styles, is blowing up the reputation of this region. I am eagerly waiting for the next special selections from the Wine Advocate (we’ll still call it Parker!)

How not to think that in Greece, Turkey, Chile or Spain, where, for example, such Torro is currently blowing up, etc ... I will always be “young” and curious and always ready to believe in a world not frozen (and you too ...) There are undoubtedly a multitude of terroirs to work, to discover ...
Why did you not read my real questions? Why so few visits in the properties? Why so few controls and blind tasting (or not) of wines 5/10/15 years old as our customers do?
Why give wine to critics only to receive bad notes every year?
Why so many journalists are consensual? Just look at Bertrand Le Guern’s grids!
Of course, nothing beats a good note from Parker and the fieldwork carried out by motivated merchants.

I was looking for a conclusion on my way back to the office, Ludo Martin writes about my blog and particularly this topic. He said, why wine doesn’t use the same Michelin system as restaurants? Customers, distributors who find a good wines, inform "Michelin wine". It gets samples of the wine to taste and visit the property for a 2nd verification and we obtain what is so difficult to get today: a reference media for great wines (3 stars) and others (BIB?). The work done for free by wine lovers for the benefit of most through the verification of paid and independent professionals.
Meanwhile, Jeff Leve is in Bordeaux and is visiting many properties (and their tables!)

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