The domain has belonged to the family for six generations now.
The vineyard, first created in 1837 by Augustin, has seen the succession of Pierre, Maurice Louis and Michel. Then, in October 2000, Laurent came to work with his father and grandfather. Following family tradition, when a son joins his father to work together, a portion of the cognac distilled in that year is set preciously aside and will only be sold by the future generations. Thus it is that in the darkness of our « Paradise » cellar lie bottles of cognac skillfully crafted by Pierre and Maurice Vallet. Our family cellars have equally seen the ageing of cognacs that date from 1866 to the present day. A part of these vintages has been sealed by the BNIC (« Bureau National Interprofessionnel du Cognac », the National Interprofessional Authority of Cognac).
In 2000, Laurent came to work with his father and grandfather on the property. At that time, the vineyard extended over 60 hectares in the Grande and Petite Champagne growth regions. A part of the 2000 harvest was also set aside for the generations to come. Laurent married Elodie in 2004 and they had two daughters, Loïs and Flavie. The following years saw the vineyard grow to 90 hectares, still within the Grande and Petite Champagne. Always anxious to improve quality, in 2007, Michel and Laurent built a new state-of-the-art blending cellar. In this same year, Elodie came to work with the family at the Château Montifaud. In 2011, Laurent and Michel renovated the 12 hectolitre pot stills, set up during the period of their ancestor, Pierre. As demand was constantly becoming greater and greater, Laurent signed for the purchase of around 30 more hectares of land in 2015, bringing the vineyard to stretch over 120 hectares today.
In 1972, Michel joined his father at the domain and continued to perpetuate the tradition of storing a portion of his first cognac produced. Then, in 1973, Louis and Michel had a new distillery set up of two 25 hectolitre pot stills. In the following year, 1974, Michel and Catherine married and had two children, Laurent-Louis and Nathalie. During this same time, the vineyard reached the size of 48 hectares. Michel and Catherine wanted to sell their entire production in bottles and therefore, began to prospect new markets and to develop the range of Château Montifaud products. Their market has since stretched across all of Europe, Canada, Scandinavia, South Africa, Asia, the Baltic States, Russia and the Ukraine.
In 1940, the situation darkened with the Second World War. Still, Maurice was able to take care of the vineyard up to the day of 31st December 1943, when the city of Cognac and its region were heavily bombed. The village of Jarnac-Champagne was hit and 80% of the family domain was destroyed. Through great luck, the storage cellars located 1 km away were spared. Louis took over the vineyard in 1947 and distilled his first cognac. He then married Micheline and there were two children, Michel-Maurice and Nicole. Together, little by little, Louis and Micheline rebuilt and enlarged the vineyard, rebuilt the installations and increased business. They developed bottle sales in new markets such as Germany, England and the USA.
Maurice began distilling with his father Pierre in 1904 (our prestigeous quality cognac « Heritage Maurice Vallet » comes from blends of this period). During this time, Château Montifaud was in a new period of growth, thanks to the distillation that had been a legal right, called « privilège ». This allowed Pierre and Maurice to set up two new pot stills of 12 hectolitres each (stills later used by Louis and Michel, and then reconditioned by Laurent in 2011). Following the 1914-18 war, the economic period was equally very difficult. Maurice and his brother Gustave had left for the war while Pierre looked after the 35 hectare vineyard. Gustave died shortly after returning. Maurice married Ernestine and there were four children, Maurice (from a previous marriage), Louis-Augustin, Simone and Marcel. All the while selling his cognac to wine merchants, Maurice reserved a part of his production to sales of 10 litre kegs and in bottles. Thus began a new era for Château Montifaud. Maurice was one of the first winegrowers in the region to directly market his products. He developed his sales on the French, Belgian and Swiss markets.
In 1878, the vineyard of Château Montifaud was struck by phylloxera and was mostly destroyed. A very difficult period then followed. Beginning in 1885, it became necessary to rebuild the vineyard thanks to large stocks of cognac produced by Augustin and Pierre. Pierre married Judith and they had two sons, Gustave and Maurice.
Augustin-Pierre Vallet created a vineyard of 3 hectares around 1837. Ten years later, it spread over approximately a dozen hectares and he became a home distiller by setting up three pot stills of 3 hectolitres each. Few landowners distilled their own wine during this period. So, he distilled for himself and his neighbours. This special right, called « privilege », enabled him to build up a fortune. Due to this, around 1866, Augustin-Pierre and Victorine, his wife, were able to have a « château » (castle) built ; the designation « château » is registered.