During the distillation of the 1994 vintage, Armagnac lost one of its great personalities, Léon Lafitte. Lafitte, son of a local merchant, army officer, and Mayor of Labastide, took over Domaine Boingnères when his father-in-law passed away in 1953.
With the encouragement of Raymond Baudoin, founder of the Revue de Vins de France, Lafitte began bottling his armagnacs and selling them from the domaine. Soon, every major restaurant in Paris carried his vintages. Several years later, however, he fell ill and was bedridden for nearly half a decade. Understandably, he could not give his armagnacs the attention they deserved. Cured of his illness and with newfound life, Lafitte returned his attention to his properties. He removed the Bacco and began replanting with what he considered to be the Cépages Nobles (Folle Blanche, Colombard and Ugni Blanc). He constructed a new chai with two horizontal presses so that he could control the vinification of his base matter. In 1975,a gas-fueled alambic was built for the domaine. Its plates each contained nine exiting pipes for the vaporous spirit, something that gave greater contact with the incoming wine and, along with a low distillation temperature, ensured potential flavorants.
Today, Marguerite Lafitte and her daughter Martine run the domaine.
Proprietor: The Lafitte Family
Village: Le Frêche (Landes)
Hectares of Vines in Production: 22 ha (54.5 acres)
Other Production: None
Wine Production: 1800 hl
Percent of Production Used for Distillation: 50%
Grapes: Folle Blanche (50%)
Ugni Blanc (25%)
Soil: Sables Fauves (iron-rich sand)
Production of Armagnac per Year: 60-80 hl a.p.(30-40 barrels)
Distiller: The Lafittes themselves
Degree of Spirit Upon Exiting the Still: 52° (104 proof)
Oldest Spirit Still in Cask: 1964
Youngest Spirit in Cask: 2006
Commercialized Armagnacs Available: Réserve Spéciale (5-10 years old)
Vintages Available: Many between 1959 and 1985, including pure Folle Blanche, Colombard, Ugni Blanc and Bacco.
Stock: 1,150 hl a.p. (575 barrels)