1984: Creation of Olivier Leflaive Frères
Everything started with a request from a renowned American importer who was looking for wines from Meursault and Chassagne-Montrachet. The family estate had vines in neither appellation nor the capacity to vinify any more grapes. So Olivier created a winemaking business in his own name. His idea, unique in Burgundy, was to buy in grapes and must, vinify and age them according to the same methods used at the family estate and then sell them en primeur, or before bottling. He wasn’t alone in believing in this crazy project – several other people joined him in the adventure including his brother Patrick, who invested in the business and became co-owner. His uncle Vincent also invested and acted in an advisory capacity, introducing him to winegrowers, and eventually to Jean-Marc Boillot who became his winemaker from 1984 to 1988. Together, they brought this haute-couture business to life.
The arrival of Franck Grux, winery manager
Franck Grux was a young and talented winemaker who had been working at the Domaine Roulot in Meursault. He rapidly became Olivier’s right-hand man. Since 1988, they have been composing wines from a bold palette, giving free rein to their expertise and intuition.
The 500,000 bar
Empowered by his success and creativity, Olivier Leflaive Frères passes the bar of half a million bottles.
La Table d’Olivier Leflaive
The conviviality of enjoying a glass of wine amongst friends led Olivier to open Burgundy’s first table d’hôte enabling him to received guests and to introduce them to some of the great wines of Burgundy through a tasting accompanied by regional specialties.
The Chablis adventure
As a specialist in white wines, Olivier Leflaive Frères extends its expertise to the Chablis AOC.
Newly retired from his career in insurance, Patrick leaves Grenoble to join forces with his brother. He handles PR and represents the company overseas. He becomes president of the group.
A major logistical advance: Olivier Leflaive Frères expands its storage facilities by joining forces with some partners to construct a new depot – Pool Logistic – in Meursault. The new facility offers optimum conditions for storing and dispatching the company’s wines.
La Maison d’Olivier Leflaive
As numbers of diners grow, Olivier decides to open a four-star hotel to allow guests to stay longer and to enjoy the Burgundy experience so dear to him.
Julie comes home
Julie joins in the adventure with her father and takes over running the hotel and the tourism-related aspects of the business.
Olivier recruits his future general manager and former son-in-law Jean Soubeyrand.
Wine tourism – the rewards
Olivier Leflaive’s hotel and restaurant win the first prize in the National Oenotourism Awards in the Hotel and Restaurants category.
After several long years, Olivier and Patrick finally receive their family legacy in the form of some fabulous terroirs:
– Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru
– Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru
– Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Les Pucelles
– Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Les Folatières
– Meursault 1er Cru Blagny Sous le Dos d’Âne
Champagne Valentin Leflaive
From a friendship of two wine and terroir lovers born the Champagne Valentin Leflaive.