The wine bug first bit the young and ambitious Baptiste Lalfert when he tasted a bottle of 1974 Château Suduiraut at a family reunion. Though Baptiste does not come from a winegrowing family as most young vignerons do in France, he boldly set about creating his own path. After finishing a degree in Enology in 2006, he went to Burgundy to Domaine Jean-Marc Boillot to pursue his apprenticeship—a defining region and relationship that has helped shape Baptiste’s career. In 2007, upon hearing about a vineyard of old-vines Carignan and Cinsault that was destined to be destroyed in southern France, he returned to his native Languedoc determined to harness the vineyard’s great potential. Suddenly, Baptiste found himself a farmer of just over one hectare of land without any cellar space or equipment with which to work. Slowly but surely, he has found cellar space to rent, equipment to borrow, and a community in which he can spread his wings. True grit and raw optimism have launched this gifted young garagiste into France’s final winegrowing frontier.
Baptiste’s vineyard is situated in La Boissière, twenty-five kilometers northwest of Montpellier, at the foothills of the Cevennes Mountains. This climate here is optimal, where cool mountain air prevents heat spikes that are often typical in this drier Mediterranean region. This type of climate also serves in creating balance in the wines—it facilitates a slow ripening of the grapes (essential for phenolic development) and translates into bright acidity. Finding equilibrium is the essence of Baptiste’s philosophy. As one of the newest additions to the KLWM portfolio, we are confident in his potential, and if his most recent vintage is any indication, we see a bright future for this passionate newcomer.