Nicolas Badel
Rhône Valley

Nicolas Badel was not born into the world of wine, but wine is his passion and has drawn him into the life of a vigneron. Hailing from a family of local farmers, he trained as an engineer before deciding that winemaking was the profession he sought. Nicolas went back to school to study viticulture and spent many years working in other people's vineyards. In 1999 he acquired vineyards in Saint-Joseph (some purchased, others rented) and sold his wine to the local co-op while preparing his own vineyards outside of the appellation. In 2010 he finally began making and bottling his own wine. He has been certified organic since the beginning.

The winery is located near Vernosc-lès-Annonay, on the plateau above the Rhône valley. On a hillside called Les Grands Vignes next to the winery, Nicolas has reclaimed 2.5 hectares of vines at 350m on sandy granitic soils with full southern exposure. The vines here are young, mostly planted in 2008. The majority of the vines are Syrah, but he has also planted some Marsanne and Viognier. Nicolas calls the area very "sauvage"; the vineyard is very secluded, surrounded by scrubby forest and only accessible via a long dirt path through the woods.

His vineyards in St-Joseph and Condrieu are both near the town of Limony. The St-Joseph vineyard was his first and is located on the plateau at 350m. The Condrieu vineyard is a half-hectare parcel closer to the river, on a steep hill in a protected hollow. The vines here are between 13 and 30 years old.