The history of the Atelier du Bouilleur

About the artisanal distillery

L’Atelier du Bouilleur is a cooperative craft distillery located in the south of France. Since 2014, we have been producing high quality spirits following the commitments of the “Natural Hooch Manifesto” – ethical, ecological, additive-free. We also offer custom distillation for professionals and amateurs, including the wine estates of the Faugèrois region, which entrust us with the production of the Fine Faugères, the appellation’s brandy.


Passionate associates


Cooperative distillery


Artisanal spirits

The artisanal distillery of spirits

A century ago, during the times of the Midi Rouge, our region was a great producer of wine brandy: the famous “trois-six” and other Fines were distilled by the thousands of liters in distillation cooperatives of which one can still find traces in almost every village. The former cooperative distillery of Autignac, now owned by the UDM Group – Union des Distillerie de la Méditerranée, houses our small artisanal distillery. Its existence is the result of a multitude of cooperations. This is reflected in its legal structure: We are a SCOP – cooperative and participative company, bringing the past of the building to the present.


The history of the distillery


1st Mention Fine Faugère

First mention of Fine Faugères in the inventory of the cve of the Empress Josephine.


Start of construction

Construction of the cooperative distillery in Autignac.


Auction sale

auction of the last Fine Faugères after the Salles brothers stopped production.


Resumption of production

The production was resumed on the initiative of the Faugères syndicate in cooperation with Matthieu Frécon (itinerant distiller), the UDM group (owner of the building) and its regional director Philippe Cayrol.


Creation of the Atelier du Bouilleur

Creation of L’Atelier du Bouilleur by Martial Berthaud and Quentin LeCleac’h.


The team is growing!

Arrival of Theresa in the team and departure of Quentin.


Creation of the Natural Hooch Manifesto

Creation of the Manifest de la Gnôle Naturelle in cooperation with Alcools Vivant and Distillerie Baptiste.


The team is growing!

Arrival of Matthieu in the team.

The Scop

At the origin of our eaux-de-vie, a SCOP

Today our SCOP is composed of three associates: Martial, Theresa and Matthieu living and working on site, in a collective and post-punk mode. Recover, recycle, repair and cultivate: we try to do as many things as possible ourselves, to reduce the pollution of our dear planet and the consumption of its resources. And each one of us brings his or her seed in a great complementarity. Our know-how of artisanal distiller is put to work to compose natural brandy in the Occitan region.


“You are an artist whose art is only revealed if you open the bottle!” said a photographer during a discussion about the “Josiane” project, our French agave brandy. Buddy Willie, English chocolatier at Willie’s Cacao and intern at AdB, agrees: “Martial is the most passionate distiller I’ve ever seen. When he talks about distillation it’s like he’s talking about playing an instrument.”
For a long time now, the transformation of a raw material into a transparent alcoholic liquid has fascinated him: picking the fruit, watching over the living organisms during fermentation, understanding the micro-organisms and their habits, allowing himself to be surprised, and then taking the time for distillation, simply but with all 5 senses, by hand, with the nose, with the strength of his arms (and his forklift). He has been passionate about distillation since 2002, and guided by Matthieu Frécon’s book “L’alambic” (The still) he tried his first experiments: perched at the time in squatted villages in the Cevennes. For its very first brandy it took a team of friends to collect the fruit, the arbouse…

At the beginning of 2010 Martial needs to change his life. He thought about distillation and decided to become a professional. In search of a still, he met Matthieu Frécon, the author of the famous book, at the time a mobile distiller in Faugères. He too wants to change his life. If he sells his stills, it is to leave. The meeting of the two is synergistic. Matthieu sees in front of him a successor worthy of his work and proposes to Martial to take over everything, including the performance for the Faugerois. With a friend – Quentin Lecleac’h, now a distiller in Uzes – and the help of the UDM through its regional director Philippe Cayrol and with the support of the wine estates of Faugères, the AdB was founded.

Today there is hardly a fruit or a vegetable that would have resisted Martial’s tests. Whether it’s fermenting cane juice from Vietnam or wild agave from Marseille, or making daring gin recipes or fines. When people with ideas and projects contact him they often find an open ear, and the crazier or more difficult the idea, the more tempted he is. Martial loves anything that allows him to play with his stills to produce art in the bottle.


Theresa is a true Swiss Army knife. Originally from Germany, she is a certified penal mediator, a translator in three languages, a lecturer, a writer, an experienced gardener, a botanical connoisseur and a spirits enthusiast. She is co-founder of the Manifeste de la Gnôle Naturelle, and has visited most of the artisanal distilleries in Europe in order to write a book on the subject.

Arrived in 2016 at the distillery, she contributed to the development of the buildings, the development of the vegetable and aromatic garden and manages the public relations of the Atelier du Bouilleur.
Loving to go for walks and gatherings, it is not rare to see her coming back with all kinds of plants, fruits, berries or mushrooms. It is customary to make its macerates and contributes greatly to the development of recipes for spirits.
Her diet is vegan, as a good cook, she takes great pleasure in treating her guests to meals without animal products and in describing the tastes with precision thanks to a very sharp palate which you will be able to perceive the finesse if you are with her during a tasting.


September 2016 France Quintessence show, tasting after tasting with potential customers without interest and bim! Matthieu Collin comes from the restaurant where he was a chef and tastes our spirits with precision and curiosity. Two years after the Cave St Martin de Raymond, a gastronomic cellar restaurant famous in the small world of natural wines, re-Bim! Matthieu delights us with his dishes and his food and wine pairings. A friendship was born, made of water, wine, alcohol, plants and good food tastings, but above all of beautiful discussions and laughter. We stayed in regular contact even when he returned to Paname to practice his talents as a chef. May 2019 challenge: make a vegan gourmet kitchen meal at Theresa’s birthday party! Re-re-Bim! Matthieu has amazed us. Result: a click in his career and in that of Martial. Linking cooking and distillation is a new world that reveals itself to us… Second confinement Matthieu arrives at the distillery to leave his career as a Chef and begin that of Distiller.

Obviously from that moment on, everything changed at the distillery. His seriousness in his work, his ideas, his experiences, his know-how, his good mood, his curiosity allowed us to go further in the distillery. Martial finds an accomplice, a successor, an associate and someone to pass on his knowledge to while learning from him. In short, instead of handing over the business too quickly, they go a long way together: the succession is more than assured. The trio of distillers, pickers, roommates… is born and it’s a great match.
Quote from Martial: “What marks me the most is that after years of distillation it is the most passionate person I have met and I am lucky to work with!”