In Beaumont-en-Auge, this family will give birth to a vineyard on the land of his ancestors

On the land acquired by her ancestor, Sandra, her family, and Pierre, a vineyard is born.
On the land acquired by her ancestor, Sandra, her family, and Pierre, a vineyard is born. (© Le Pays d’Auge)

It is a dream on the way to come true, and the fruit of an astonishing heritage. Pierre Boinet and Sandra Elie-Lefèvre have just planted 1,100 vines in Beaumont-en-Auge (Calvados). One (not so) crazy project of vineyard in which a whole family is rooted. “We have succeeded in mobilizing our friends and neighbors for the plantation, that is to say about twenty people”, rejoices Sandra, accompanied in this unifying adventure by her three cousins, Maud, Antoine and Fabrice.

The tasty weights of ancestors

Sandra is an agent in wine and champagne, Pierre is a wine merchant after having been a sommelier. The couple met through a tasting, before settling in Beaumont-en-Auge, a village steeped in childhood memories for Sandra. “When you are passionate about wine,ultimate outcomeis to produce. Setting up your domain is a dream when you haven’t inherited it. It’s very moving for us ”, confides Pierre Boinet, head of the wine cellar and the recent spirits cellar.

For Sandra, the heritage is indeed present. The first is known, the other you, but both are tasty. “I recently learned that my paternal great-grandfather was a wine merchant on rue Saint-Jean in Caen,” says the woman who has worked in this area for three years. A discovery which sheds light on the origin of this passion that she has always cultivated, and finally flowed in her veins since always. “I understand better why I’ve loved it since I was 18, it’s in my genes! She smiles.

The land which will revive part of its family history, located below the cemetery and dominated by the village, belonged to another ancestor. “My maternal great-grandfather lived in Carentan and had invested in this land in the early 1950s. For 60 years it had not been used. He must have been a visionary at the time! She slips, amused and touched. A common passion, a wink of fate, and “thanks to the energy of Pierre”, this evocative project of transmission has germinated in the head of an entire family.

About twenty people took part in planting the vines.
About twenty people took part in planting the vines. (© DR)

Return to the hollow of the earth and the sky

The planting took place this Wednesday, and again, it cannot be invented. 12/21/21, an “incredible” date according to Pierre. Or rather lunar, for this future wine cultivated in biodynamics and agroforestry. This cultivation method follows the precepts initiated by Rudolf Steiner in 1924. “It is based in particular on the lunar calendar. Planting at this time corresponds to the waning moon. This has an impact on growth, as all gardeners know, ”explains Pierre Boinet.

The essence of this concept: to rely on on nature, “Observe it, listen to it and adapt to it”. “We improve the soil so that the vines can manage themselves in the most natural way possible. By using, for example, potions, nettle infusions made from cow dung, ”he explains. To give the vines every chance to grow at their best, they will plant trees on the field, which has already welcomed new tenants: chickens and sheep. Basically, the duo want to plant seeds in people’s minds. “We want to educate our children, our neighbors, about healthier agriculture. And change mentalities to take care of the planet, ”summarizes the wine merchant.

The 1st cuvée from the Vignes de Beaumont

On the 10 hectare land, the merry tribe planted vines on half a hectare, choosing as varieties chardonnay and chenin. “Loire varietals”, suitable for so-called cold regions such as Normandy. “I have winegrower friends who envy our climate! »Assures Pierre Boinet. For four years, they will continue to plant to reach 2 hectares. “We will be doing the first harvest in three years and should have our first cuvée test in 2024 ”, he announces. If the vineyard will be called “Les Vignes de Beaumont”, a bottle could bear the name of the one who made it possible. Sandra’s great-grandfather, Leonor.

Shervin’s micro-farm will also take root

Pierre and Sandra will not be the only ones to revive the Friche Allais field. Shervin Darianian has acquired a hectare to grow his permaculture micro-farm project. A former business school student, this Honfleurais finally turned to gardening, thus maturing his idea. A change of direction, after a series of meetings and readings. When his agro-agricultural market gardening has taken shape, he will sell his vegetables in a short circuit, within a radius of 20 km around Beaumont-en-Auge. “It’s a subject that fascinates me, and I want to participate in the ecological transition on my scale. “

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