A Conversation With Aubert de Villaine
As part of this year’s La Paulée de New York, I am going to be interviewing Aubert de Villaine, the co-director of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, Burgundy’s most celebrated estate and probably the most famous winery on the planet. “A conversation with Aubert de Villaine” will take place at Restaurant Daniel on Saturday March 9th, from 10-11:30AM. De Villaine and I will discuss his many years at the helm of DRC and will also talk about Burgundy’s past, present, and future. De Villaine is a remarkable figure whose importance to Burgundy, and to wine, can’t be overstated. As Allen Meadows put it to me, de Villaine is the conscience of Burgundy; where he leads, the rest of Burgundy follows. Changes he instituted at DRC in the 1970s helped set in motion Burgundy’s quality revolution, and some 40 years on, de Villaine remains Burgundy’s guiding light. Needless to say, I am very excited about this event, which will benefit the effort to have the vineyards of Burgundy recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site*, and am honored to be able to play a part in it. Click here for more details and tickets, and I hope some of you can join us on March 9th.
*The most acclaimed of those vineyards, of course, is Romanée-Conti itself, which has been a source of brilliant wines going back hundreds of years, and which was also the subject of probably my favorite wine quote of all. A document published in 1794 noted that the wine from the Romanée-Conti vineyard was “the most excellent of all those of the Côte d’Or…Its brilliant and velvety color, its ardor and scent, charm all the senses….Well kept, it always improves as it approaches its eighth or tenth year; it is then a balm for the elderly, the feeble and the disabled, and will restore life to the dying.” The de Villaine family acquired the Romanée-Conti vineyard in 1869, and Aubert de Villaine has been its custodian, and custodian of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, since the early 1970s.