Julien Pineau took over the reins at the historic Clos Roche Blanche vineyard from Didier and Catherine Barouillet in 2015, tn conjunction with Laurent Saillard. They vinify and farm their plots separately but are happy to have two winemakers with the same ideals working on the same plot of land without interference from winemakers using chemicals. Julien spent a year working with the Barouillets before taking over and was using their old cellar, though he is currently building his own near his house in Pouille.
His winemaking is what he would describe as laissez-faire, in terms of he is very hands-off in the cellar. But in reality he is very hard working in the vineyard and in the cellar he then tries to keep it as simple as possible to let the grapes express themselves. He is lucky to work with numerous varieties on the surface, including some very old vines of Pineau d'Aunis, Cot & Sauvignon. In regards to additions he is not dogmatic about not adding sulfites, but it is rare that he does.
Julien's wines are pure of fruit, honest and speak of the vintage. they really speak of the good farming that has taken place on this beautiful piece of land, which has been farmed organic for over thirty years. He has recently planted some Menu Pineau, is bringing more biodiversity to the vineyard with the planting of fruit trees and constructing his own cellar. Despite the long history of Roche Blanche, it really feels like Julian's chapter in the story is just beginning