Julien Fayard Bio:
In France, Julien worked in both Provence and Bordeaux, where he defined his core winemaking style at the exalted first growth Château Lafite-Rothschild (he even lived in Lafite’s grand château for a period) as well as at Smith Haut Lafitte. There, Julien says he learned his attention to detail and how to not excessively intervene in the winery: “If you put in the hard work in the vineyard, you have to trust and have patience; then, on its own, the wine will become all that it is capable of.”
Julien has lived in the Napa Valley since 2006, when he and his wife agreed to settle down by “meeting halfway” — between his home in France… and hers in Sonoma. Here in Napa, Julien worked at Quintessa before joining Atelier Melka (where he learned from one of the best winemakers in the world, Philippe Melka), where he spent five years as the Director of Winemaking. He has come to be a Napa Valley veteran after more than a decade of working with some of the most highly acclaimed and sought after wines from the Napa Valley.
It was here, working with a variety of clients including Lail Vineyards, Gemstone, Dalla Valle, and more that Julien further developed his winemaking style — while also gaining an intimate understanding of the valley’s vineyards and establishing strong relationships with its many passionate, quality-dedicated growers. His philosophy is to produce wines with an identity that express pure, terroir-driven specificities and characteristics. He believes that as a winemaker, one doesn’t control the wine but rather wine style is the result of a combination of soil, climate and vineyard management. Wine style is an elegant combined expression of the fruit, soil, vines and climate. He also is proprietor and winemaker for Covert, plus produces wine for Krupp, Somnium, Nicholson-Jones, Le Pich, Purlieu, Matthew Wallace, Brion, Récoltant, and Caspar Estate.
Julien earned his Master in Agri-Business from ESA France and his Master in Winemaking from Toulouse France. In 2011, he received his MBA from UC Davis.