Jean-Pierre de Smet was a co-founder and partner in Domaine de l'Arlot, the winery based in the Nuits-Saint-Georges appellation. Jean-Pierre retired from l'Arlot in 2007, and has since that time been helping his friend Didier Fornerol make the Domaine Didier Fornerol wines, also in France's Burgundy region.
Jean-Pierre provides key insights into a number of Burgundy winemaking techniques, and also about the people he knew and has worked alongside with in Burgundy since the 1970s. Jean-Pierre is very clear about the influences on him of people like Jacques Seysses (Domaine Dujac), Anne-Claude Leflaive (Domaine Leflaive), and Patrick Bize (Domaine Simon Bize), and how he integrated their ideas and help into his own work at Domaine de l'Arlot. There are numerous details provided about topics like whole cluster, the speed of a fermentation, vine training, the vintages of the 1980s and 1990s, the nature of Nuits-Saint-Georges and Vosne-Romanée crus, white vs. red winemaking, and climate change. Jean-Pierre also gives a clear picture of the Burgundy community of the 1980s, and of a group of vigneron who would go on to become famous names in the region and across the world. Those who want to understand the history of Burgundy from the 1970s through to today would benefit from listening to this episode.