Awards and citations:

1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award

Sunday, 28 February 2010

Fake Pinot: a murky affair flares up again

The scandal continues to bubble away

The controversy over the fake Pinot Noir scandal has flared up again with an open letter to the local producers' union by Jean-Louis Denois, one of the pioneers of growing Pinot Noir in Limoux. Denois calls for resignations. The story is reported in today's La Dépeche.

"Faux Pinot" : la polémique enfle
'Le procès en appel du «faux pinot» connaît un nouveau rebondissement avec la lettre ouverte d'un vigneron aux syndicats de cru.

Parce qu'il se définit comme « pionnier du pinot noir » sur le terroir de Limoux depuis 1988 et l'achat d'une première vigne ainsi plantée sur la commune de Roquetaillade, Jean-Louis Denois, créateur du Domaine de l'Aigle, qui appartient aujourd'hui au Narbonnais Gérard Bertrand, signe une lettre ouverte '

Apparently at the recent Vinisud wine fair someone involved in the scandal at Sieur d'Arques claimed that all the publicity generated by the scandal was good for business!

Originally from Champagne, Denois set up his Domaine de l'Aigle in 1988 and soon established a high reputation for his wines. Denois sold part of his domaine in 2001 retaining some of his vines and the winery. He caused a storm by planting small parcels of Riesling and Gewurztraminer in Limoux and was eventually forced by court order to grub them out.

Click here for another explanation of how the Americans came to be sold the fake Pinot as well as why 'Modération' is the most popular name for pets in France.


Leon Stolarski said...


I did think about stopping by the Sieur d'Arques stand at Vinisud to ask them what on earth they were thinking. I guess my poor mastery of French is one reson I didn't.

Shame on them. And shame on them even more, if they are enjoying this publicity. It may (for whatever bizarre reason) be good publicity for Sieur d'Arques, but it does nothing but harm for the Languedoc and Roussillon wine industry as a whole.

Not that I've ever knowingly bought or drank too many wines from Sieur d'Arques in the past. But their pivotal role in this disgraceful scandal will ensure that I never will do in the future either. I hope that all true lovers of Languedoc and Roussillon wines will vote with their feet.

Jim's Loire said...

Many thanks Leon. Very sorry I'm not able to make the ASDW tasting. Jim

Leon Stolarski said...

Actually, Jim, I'm no longer a member of ASDW. No acrimony, I hasten to add, and I hope to remain in touch with some of the guys. I just didn't feel that it was going in a direction I wanted it to - and I need to save unnecessary expenditure. I see that Jamie Goode has finally decided to attend, though, which is a definite boost for them.

Jim's Loire said...

Leon. Thanks for letting me know. Best wishes