Thomas Bachelder makes terroir-specific pinot noir and chardonnay in Burgundy, Oregon and the Niagara Peninsula of Ontario. He is fascinated with the terroir of Burgundy, but also with the sedimentary soils of Oregon, and the possibilities of the northeast and the limestone soils of Niagara Bench in particular.
With their two young daughters in tow, Thomas and his wife Mary Delaney have unwittingly become wine gypsies, following their passion to produce terroir-revealing wines from these two most noble Burgundian grapes. Québécois by birth, Thomas’ family hails from the dairy farming belt east of Montréal (l’Éstrie), where the Bachelder family has owned two farms for as long as anyone can remember.
Just three years after his marriage, he went off with his young bride to study in Beaune, Bourgogne, to become a vigneron. Domaine de la Créa (Beaune); Domaine Marius Delarche (Pernand/Aloxe); Ponzi Vineyards (Oregon); Château Génot-Boulanger (Meursault) all formed him. Subsequent start-ups in Oregon at Lemelson Vineyards and the Jordan Bench-based Burgundy/ Niagara joint-venture Le Clos Jordanne both enabled him to discover and honour precious new world terroirs, just as vital, just as fragile and just as important as their old-world counterpoints.
Now, with Bachelder 3 Terroirs project, they endeavour to put honest representations of these local terroirs into every bottle they make.