In 1988, Michel and Isabelle Dietrich bought Château Haut-Rian, after living for 6 years in Clare Valley, Australia. Michel was the manager and head winemaker at Château Remy. Both of them come from winemaking families: Michel grew up in Kaysersberg, Alsace, and his wife Isabelle in the Montagne de Reims area in Champagne. Michel earned his viticulture and oenology degrees at the Collège de Beaune and the University of Bordeaux. Their daughter Pauline Lapierre joined them in 2017.
Their property is located 18 miles southeast of the city of Bordeaux, in the tiny village of Rions. The vineyards spread over eighty hectares encompassing parts of Premières Côtes de Bordeaux and Entre-Deux-Mers, bordering the village of Cadillac and near the Garonne River, ”where the vines can see the water but won’t get their feet wet.” The climate there is warmer than the maritime Médoc, but also drier. All of the vineyards are on gentle slopes facing south and southeast, and the topsoil consists of loose pebbles over limestone.
Farming practices: sustainable. The domaine will be audited before the end of 2017 for the “Terra Vitis”certification. In preparation, they are planting 200 meters of tree hedges to host the birds living nearby, and are sowing beans on 1 hectare of vines to allow the soil to breathe better.