Domaine de la Romanée-Conti’s Aubert de Villaine has paid tribute to his co-director’s ‘friendship’ after Henry-Frédéric Roch passed away on Saturday 17th November at the age of 56.
Speaking to Decanter.com de Villaine said Roch, who he had worked alongside for 26 years, had ‘a strong idea of the duties of our families regarding the Domaine.’
‘He was on my side for all the important decisions we had to take. Our collaboration was excellent.’
‘He was very appreciated at the Domaine and by all his peers in Burgundy for his kindness, human approach and generosity’.
Roch became co-director of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti in 1992, at the age of 30, following the death of his brother Charles in a car accident.
Born in 1962 to Pauline Roch-Leroy, the eldest sister of Lalou Bize-Leroy who was co-director of DRC until 1991, he was the family’s representative at the famed Burgundian estate where he remained for almost three decades.
Before his mandate at Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, Roch founded his own estate, Domaine Prieuré-Roch in 1988 in Prémeaux Prissey, classified in Nuits-Saint-Georges AOC. He also owned plots in the famous Clos de Bèze and Clos de Vougeot and was the owner of the Monopole of Nuits-Saint-Georges 1er Cru Clos des Corvées which de Villaine said was the vineyard he ‘cherished the most’.
‘He had also started a restaurant with an original concept: Le Bist’Roch in Nuits-St-Georges and he had recently bought a farm in the Hautes-Côtes de Nuits to make and sell organic products’ de Villaine added.
Update 07/12/2018: Article originally stated Roch passed away on 18th November, instead of 17th.