Emmanuel Rouget

Emmanuel Rouget

Emmanuel Rouget, a tractor engineer by training, was given a job by his uncle, the legendary Henri Jayer, in 1976. Uncle Henri instilled an unbridled enthusiasm and knowledge of winemaking in his young nephew and in 1985 Emmanuel set up on his own operating out of cellars in Flagey. He took on vines from Henri's brother, Lucien, in Echézeaux and Vosne-Romanée on a share cropping basis, which in effect meant that Emmanuel worked the vines and vinified the wine, and then gave half the wine to Uncle Lucien, while keeping the other half for himself. Rouget’s son Nicolas has joined his father and another, Guillaume, is showing interest.

By 1996 Emmanuel was producing wines from the vineyards of three of his uncles - Henri, Lucien and Georges, as well as from the vineyards of the Michelin star chef, Jean Crottet. By and large, Emmanuel has remained faithful to the techniques employed by Henri Jayer - namely an insistence on ultra low yields, a pre-fermentation cold maceration and the maturation of the major wines in 100% new oak barrels. The grapes are sorted both in the vineyard and again in the cuvérie, before being destalked and fermented after a cool pre-maceration. Emmanuel Rougeot favours pumping over ahead of punching down. The wine is matured in barrels from Francois Frères and Taransaud. One year old barrels are used for Bourgogne Rouge, 50% new oak for Vosne Romanée but 100% for Savigny-lès-Beaune, Nuits-St-Georges and the crus.
His wines are now very highly rated and keenly sought-after by connoisseurs worldwide. They continue broadly in the same style as those of Henri Jayer without perhaps touching the same heights – it may be a question of meticulousness, or just of green fingers – though they can still be breathtakingly good, and continue to command high prices in secondary markets. They are luscious, red-fruited wines with a perceptible oak aspect.

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