Christian Seely, managing director of AXA Millésimes, has appointed Jacques Devauges as technical director at AXA's Burgundy property, Domaine de l'Arlot. Devauges, 36, replaces Olivier Leriche, who has worked at l'Arlot since 1998.
Domaine de l'Arlot, located in the southern portion of the Nuits St.-Georges commune at Prémeaux-Prissey, has 34.6 acres of vineyards including Nuits St.-Georges villages and premiers crus, Vosne-Romanée Suchots and the grand cru Romanée St.-Vivant. It is known for its whole-cluster style of red Burgundy (grape clusters are not destemmed before fermentation) and has been farmed biodynamically since 2003. AXA Millésimes is a subsidiary of French insurance giant AXA, and owns wine properties in several regions, including Bordeaux, Portugal and Hungary.
Devauges is a graduate of the University of Burgundy and has worked in the region since 2001, first at Domaine de la Vougeraie and most recently at Maison Frédéric Magnien and Domaine Michel Magnien. He was hired by AXA in the spring, shortly after Leriche announced his plans to leave, and began working at Arlot in August.
Leriche and his wife, Florence, purchased an estate in the Ardèche region where they will make red and white wines, beginning with this harvest.
"We had many very good candidates for the job," said Seely. Both Leriche and Seely recruited Devauges for the position.
Asked whether Devauges will make any changes to the Arlot style, Seely said, "With all my teams at the AXA properties, we challenge ourselves and try to improve every year. We’re not trying to change things radically [at Arlot], but the mission I have given Jacques is to build on what has been accomplished at Arlot and to keep trying to improve each year."