Situated in Sancerre, France, the family estate of Henri Bourgeois has been passed down in the family for 10 generations.
Now, one of the most established winegrowers in Sancerre and one of the most renowned family wineries in France, the Bourgeois family is immensely respected for their commitment to terroir-driven expressions of Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir.
Discover the family:
Henri Bourgeois, one of Sancerre’s pioneering winegrowers, was first to concentrate his efforts into being a full-time wine producer. Henri sold his farmland in 1952, which at the time had a mix of grapevines, crops and goat pasture, to focus solely on two hectares of grapevines. Always ahead of his time, Henri was passionate about keeping separate wines from different soil types which would enhance his terroir driven approach. It is through his hard work and passion, which has been instilled in his family, that the Bourgeois family now own 120 different vineyards on 72 hectares; the largest in the region, to create their Sancerre and Pouilly-Fume wines.
“Why make good wine when you can make it excellent” – Henri Bourgeois
Jean-Marie, the son of Henri, is now the Head of the Bourgeois family and has become the face of Henri Bourgeois as he has taken Sancerre global, travelling and establishing new markets since 1985. After 52 years of devotion to Henri Bourgeois, his commitment to the community and cultural life in France, Jean-Marie was awarded the ‘Knight of the Legion of Honour’, an award of prestigious honour in France. Although Jean-Marie has now officially retired he still travels extensively through Asia, Russia and Canada as an ambassador for Henri Bourgeois and Clos Henri. He can be found preforming his signature party trick of smashing rocks together (showing the terroir) in top tradeshows worldwide.
Born in 1936, Remi was the eldest son of Henri and Solange Bourgeois. At the age of 14 Rémi started to help his father in the vineyard and developed a passion for the individual parcels of land, each with their different soil types and each bringing a unique flavour to the wines. A true man of the land, Rémi knew the terroir of Sancerre and the complexity of each soil type like the back of his hand. Devoting his life to care for each parcel that makes up the mosaic of Henri Bourgeois vineyards today, Rémi’s last work was establishing the famous hillside the “Damned Mountains” in Sancerre.
The son of Jean-Marie, Arnaud is the General Manager of Henri Bourgeois and Clos Henri. He travels extensively and is responsible for the commercial side, having close relationships with distributors all over the world. Many people who visit Clos Henri have been to a tasting hosted by Arnaud or have had a chat with him somewhere along their path. During harvest time in Sancerre, Arnaud humbly commands control of the press pit and multitasks like no other general manager around. After all, he remains a true winegrower, closely connected to his roots.
Lionel is the son of Jean-Marie and Viticulturist at Henri Bourgeois. He visits Clos Henri each summer and harvest to spend time in the vineyard, sharing his experience and knowledge. Lionel is very hands on, family minded and specialises in traditional vineyard management, following in the very large footsteps of his uncle Rémi Bourgeois.
As Winemaker of Henri Bourgeois, Jean-Christophe, the son of Rémi, is the ‘artist’ of the family. He much prefers getting down and dirty cleaning tanks in the winery, than sitting around in front of a computer screen, like so many winemakers seem to do these days. Jean-Christophe is an idealist who is very particular. He is elegant and detailed in everything that he does which is reflected in his winemaking style.