Martell names new cellar master as Fil resigns

30th March, 2016 by Amy Hopkins

Benoît Fil has stepped down as cellar master at Cognac house Martell and will be succeeded by Christophe Valtaud, the brand’s current vineyard manager.

Christophe-Valtaud

Christophe Valtaud, Martell’s current vineyard manager, has been appointed cellar master at the Cognac house

After eight years in the role, Fil will now “devote himself to personal projects”.

Valtaud, who has worked alongside Fil for a number of years, will take up the position of Martell cellar master from 1 April and will oversee terroir, distillation and blending.

The 38-year-old, a native of Cognac, holds a doctorate in biochemistry, molecular biology and plant physiology from the University of Poitiers.

Valtaud previously spent 18 months with the Bureau National Interprofessionnel du Cognac (BNIC) before joining Martell in 2011 as sustainable viticulture manager. In 2012, he was appointed distillery and wine supply manager within Martell subsidiary Maine au Bois, then, in January 2015, vineyard manager.

“I wish to thank Benoît Fil for his wonderful contribution to the House of Martell,” said César Giron, chairman and CEO of Martell.

“Christophe Valtaud follows a long line of remarkable cellar masters. With his talent and passion, he will continue the outstanding work of his predecessors, perpetuating the extraordinary quality and style of our Cognacs.”

In February this year, Martell, owned by French drinks group Pernod Ricard, released the third expression in its travel retail exclusive Martell Millésime collection – a Cognac aged for 43 years.

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