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Famed Vinter Jean-Charles Boisset on What Makes California Wine Special

Jean-Charles Boisset’s Boisset collection operates wineries around the world, many of which are located in California’s Sonoma and Napa valleys. In an exclusive interview, we asked him about the state of and the future of the wine industry, and what sets California wines apart from the rest.

How has the wine industry evolved over the past decade? 

The wine industry has grown tremendously in the last 10 years, with a dramatic increase in the number of wineries and wines produced. Therefore, you must offer a meaningful experience in order to distinguish yourself and provide guests with a truly memorable visit.

We are proud that all of our properties engage visitors on many levels, not just with wine tasting, but with art, food, and interactive experiences that hopefully enable guests to discover something new about themselves!

What inspired the Boisset Collection and how did you bring it to life? 

Boisset Collection was inspired by a desire to showcase a portfolio of historic and unique wineries and lifestyle destinations, bound together by a common vision of enriching our guests and clients’ lives by exposing them to the art de vivre, and encouraging them to explore their senses!

Wine is at the heart of our world, and the inspiration and catalyst for our exploration into other endeavors, from gourmet delicacies to our jewelry line, and our brand new fashion, fragrance, and beauty boutique, Senses by JCB in Yountville.

What makes California wine unique compared to wine in other regions of the world? 

The incredible terroir and reliable climate, of course, but also the entrepreneurial and innovative spirit that guides the vintners, winemakers, and other colleagues that are the backbone of our amazing industry in Napa Valley and Sonoma County!

As a Frenchman born into a winemaking family in Burgundy, I truly believe the American, and Californian, attitude and willingness to take risks and push the boundaries are what make Californian wine and the California wine industry truly special.

What kinds of sustainable farming practices do you employ to ensure your wines are safe for the environment?

Our estate vineyards at both Raymond Vineyards in Napa Valley and DeLoach Vineyards in Sonoma County’s Russian River Valley are certified organic and Biodynamic. We do not use synthetic chemicals but instead listen to Mother Nature and let her guide our viticultural practices to nurture the land and produce wines that are balanced, harmonious, and alive!

What wine trends should readers be looking out for this summer?

I’m excited to see that Americans have truly embraced rosé — it is an ideal refreshing choice for summer, something the French have long known and embraced! Boisset Collection produces a wide range of rosés, from both the French side of our portfolio as well as from all of our California properties, including at 1881 Napa, the country’s first wine history museum that just opened in Oakville.

We certainly want to begin the trend for every Napa Valley visitor to stop at 1881 Napa to learn about the origins of the country’s premier wine region and provide a knowledge base that will enrich their time in our famous region.

Staff, [email protected]

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