I was shocked.
I heard yesterday via a bulletin-board, but having made a few calls I can confirm that we have lost Benoit and the funeral is this morning.
I tasted with him at the end of July; he was quite young (late 30s, early 40s was my guess) and was full of energy and enthusiasm he was welcoming very friendly too. He took time off for me from moving his fermentation tanks around the yard – precariously with a fork-lift truck – because he was having a new floor laid in the cuverie (the cuverie away from the Château). Because of this we had to run the gauntlet of smelly of molten adhesive and down the cellar steps and close the door as fast as possible, mainly to avoid suffocation!
Everything in my discussion with Benoit was about the future and he beamed when talking about his wines and vines – and even other peoples vines too! Tasting with him was like banishing the thought that bad wines could even exist.
It was one of the best tastings of the year for me, I feel lucky to have seen him so recently.
I’m still shocked.