Patrice Noyelle: last of the Mohicans

Notably, for Noyelle, Pol Roger appears to have completed something missing in his own life. Noyelle had married into the Mommessin family and, as a result, worked for the Burgundy-based business for 25 years until the call to head up Pol Roger arrived. “I was the husband of my wife in Burgundy, and I became myself in Champagne,” he admits, with great honesty and emotion.

Patrice Noyelle

Patrice Noyelle

Not only did running a Champagne house give him freedom to make, implement and earn respect from his own decisions, but it also allowed him to take part in the production side. “Mommessin were merchants and I wanted to be a winemaker,” he says, adding with emphasis, “I wanted to be responsible for the product.”

Furthermore, the late career move has created a new passion for Noyelle. “If you can do Champagne well it really is a dream wine, it is such a nice beverage, easy to drink and never tiring. I was told when I arrived in Champagne that it is the king of wines, and it really is the king of wines. I am very happy I spent 15 years of my life in Champagne.”

Doubtless d’Harcourt will improve the sales and reputation of Pol Roger, building on the solid foundations for success laid by Noyelle. Indeed, d’Harcourt is part of a very strong base carefully constructed by Noyelle in anticipation of his retirement.

But while Pol Roger will continue in the same spirit, Champagne has lost something. With Noyelle’s departure goes one of the region’s most charming and engaging personalities. He will be missed, but, of course, not forgotten.

Pol Roger’s leading men: the incumbent and the successor

Patrice Noyelle: CV
• Patrice Noyelle trained as a chemical engineer and worked from 1969-70 as a research engineer at the Alcolac Chemical Corporation in the US.
• In 1971 he moved to chemical company Aquitaine Organico in Paris, where he was export director.
• Following his marriage to Bénédicte Bellenand, who is part of the Mommessin family, in 1972 he became export director at Maison Mommessin, where he worked until 1997, when he was approached by Pol Roger to become the house’s managing director.
• In June 1998 he was made president of the directors at Pol Roger.
• He is also a director of Mommessin’s Domaine du Clos de Tart.

Laurent d’Harcourt: CV
• Laurent d’Harcourt was born in Burgundy and went on to study Economy and Law in Paris.
• After his studies Laurent spent a year in the United States, working with wine distributors and wholesalers in more than 17 different states.
• Laurent then returned to Dijon, France, to conduct mandatory military service as an air force officer.
• After his service Laurent became the area export manager for a small Burgundy house based in Meursault.
• Laurent stayed with this winery until it was taken over by Boisset.
• In 1996, he moved to Champagne to join Bruno Paillard, where he worked until 2004 when he left to complete an MBA at Reims Business School.
• In 2006 he was approached to join Pol Roger.
• In June 2008 he was appointed export manager for Pol Roger.
• In June 2013 he will become managing director of the Champagne house, when current MD Patrice Noyelle officially retires.

One Response to “Patrice Noyelle: last of the Mohicans”

  1. Lori Pedersen Harrison says:

    Dear sirs, I am writing from Mexico and am late, ever so late in congratulating Patrice Noyelle of his past year retirement FROM pol Roger.
    Do you have a recommendation of how I could contact him. I have been trying to locate him following the sad events last week in Paris. WITH SINCERE THANKS FOR YOUR HELP.. Lori Pedersen Harrison

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