A family history
Though the origins of the name of our estate remain uncertain – Millière could come from “miliaire” the word for milestone in Roman times – , one thing that is sure is that its viticultural vocation is closely linked to the history of the Arnaud family.
It was in the 1940s that Fernand Arnaud, already the son and grandson of winemakers and Michels grandfather, bought La Millière. At that time on the estate, vineyards were side by side with fruit orchards including cherries and apples.
Aimé, Fernands son, very quickly fell under the charm of this land and, at barely 14, decided to devote his life to vines and wine. Over time, Aimé, aided by his fathers advice, transformed La Millière, making the estate fully viticultural. From a very young age, Michel naturally inherited this passion for this land of vines and wine.
Choosing the vines and his terroir over childrens games of his age, Michel came very young to tending the vineyards and crafting wine. His favourite free time activity was to roam his terroir, getting to know and understand each separate plot. The alchemy between Michel and his wine-lands came about very quickly. For him, his vocation was laid out: he would be a vinegrower-winemaker.
Once he had passed his vine and wine diploma, and after having spent a number of years working with his father and grandfather, Michel took over La Millière in 1983, making him the 5th generation of Arnaud vinegrower-winemakers.
Since then, and in the name of the passion for wine that is his inheritance, Michel has continued to exactingly apply the knowledge handed down to him by his parents and grandparents. In his footsteps comes Vincent, his elder son, who has just joined the estate. He continues the family history that has been at the heart of La Millière for many decades into the 6th generation.
“My wines are the purest expression of the land of my birth. They show the power of the terroirs here, the elegance of old vines and the personality of its unique environment.” Michel Arnaud
For several years now, tending the vines organically – today certified – has been the only tending method we consider appropriate; in addition we use a biodynamic approach both for our different terroirs and in the vinification of our wine.
For work in our vineyards, the priority is given to manual over mechanical; this includes a manual harvest, thinning, grassing and tilling etc. In order to preserve our environment, we actively manage our biodiversity, carrying out a full inventory of flora and fauna on our estate in 2013. Planting fruit trees encourages pollination, we also ensure that the population of the wild, nectar bearing wild flowers that bees prefer remains stable. This – as well as setting up bee hives on our estate -contributes to the natural balance of our environment