duchampt

Portrait of winemakers #10

Introduce yourself briefly
Georges Duchampt, winemaker since 1977, married with two children. I started work at the Quincé cellar cooperative. Then I started producing wine from some of my own grapes, keeping the rest of the harvest for the Quincé cellar. I like the sense of community and mutual support it brings. As a winemaker, your ultimate goal is to produce your own wine and sell it under your own name. I retired in 2010, but I still manage a few vines and I enjoy taking part in events run by the Quincé cellar. I like meeting customers and talking about my passion.

How did you become winemaker ?
I come from a family of winemakers – my parents and grandparents were in the same business. In fact, we’ve been a family of farmers since 1630, during the time of the serfs. Although I grew up in this environment, becoming a winemaker was a deliberate career choice for me. I really wanted to be involved with a product that is associated with culture and civilisation and has been bringing people pleasure for thousands of years. I set up my vineyard at the age of 25, taking over my parents’ land. Over the years, I expanded the vineyard by buying up neighbouring plots.

What makes you proud of your job?
Producing wine that people enjoy and that brings people together. I love the idea that people share a drink as a token of their friendship. I’m proud to have had the chance to share my passion with thousands of grape pickers and consumers for more than 40 years. Teaching people to enjoy wine with humility is also a great source of pride.

What are your passions outside of your job?
Singing. I’m a member of the “la Mézerine” choir in Belleville sur Saône. We create our own interpretations of classical pieces, such as requiems by Mozart and Fauré, with the backing of our orchestras. For me, singing, music and wine are three things that everyone enjoys. I also love playing tarot and draughts, although I don’t win very often (laughter). One of my life’s passions is to treat women with respect and courtesy. I’m glad to see that women are establishing a stronger role in winemaking here in Beaujolais. Did you know that women weren’t even allowed to prune vines until a few years ago? That’s nothing but useless symbolism. I’m proud to have seen this shift in our society.

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