The soil composition of the vineyards terroir offers many diverse properties,
be it gravel, sand or clay, enabling the establishment of an entire range of emblematic
Bordeaux grape varieties.
The estate vineyard is made up of six different blocks of vines planted in the midst of the Commune of Léognan, on the gravel residue left by the old river, that used to flow through the village, called l’Eau Blanche.
There are 44 hectares of vines, with an average age of 20 years, which constitutes the vineyard of Château Haut-Bergey and certain parcels of vines are even 60 years old.
Sensitive to the most diverse forms of creative expression, Paul Garcin explores a continuing path of creativity, throughout his work with wine. After an excursion into the worlds of cinema and music, he joined the family business in 2007 and in particular Château Haut-Bergey where he spent most of his adolescence. Aware of new experiences,
he developes his own personal taste in wine by working directly in the vineyard.
Driven by the inspiration of wine growers throughout France, he shapes his own experience
with the commitment, pleasure and sharing of values and respect for the land.
Mindful of the organic approach to wine making, as introduced to him by his wife, a trained nutritionist, he was quickly drawn towards the environmental and bio-dynamic considerations of those people he meets, who appreciate and undersatand what they drink.
« Finding the bench mark between a good wine and a great wine is much more based on an emotional view than an organoleptic one. That emotional and satisfying bench mark, I have only ever experienced in the tasting of bio-dynamic wines. »
His responsibilities and the importance of ‘a hands on’ approach to wine making has convinced him to live directly on the premises. He lives next to the Château, with his wife, his greatest support and their two children and he spends his working life shared between the vineyards and the chais.
When in 2014 he became head of Château Haut-Bergey, he restructured and strengthened the team as part of his new vision of the domain and it’s wines. He achieved his vision of an organic product in 2015 and put his idea of bio-dynamic wine making throughout all the vineyards in 2016.
As a true mark of it’s authenticity, Château Haut-Bergey was honoured with the organic and bio-dynamic certification AB and Demeter in 2018 and Biodyvin in 2019, making it the first property of the appellation to be certified bio-dynamic.
« Biodynamic cultivation, gives us tools that help a wine makers knowledge, gained from a peasants natural wisdom and it is a method that demands attention, precision and discipline. »
Anne-Laure de Gramont, a young engineer in viticulture and oenology and a certified oenologist – DNO, arrived at Château Haut-Bergey in 2014, having been trained in the wine regions of Champagne, Maury, Sauternes and in New Zealand and California. After her first experience, working in an organic vineyard, without the use of any chemical products, her positive attitude to organic production of wine, convinced Paul Garcin to give her the role of wine making director.
As from 2015, she began introducing organic methods of wine growing to the entire vineyard.
Conscious of the movement for biodynamic cultivation, she is deeply respectful of
nature’s rythmns, the return to the study of plants and the complete involvement
of the wine maker with his land. A conclusive test on half a hectare, run by a closely
knit team of experts in 2016, determined the complete conversion to biodynamic
principles at Château Haut-Bergey.
Biodynamics introduces a greater flexibility in organising the schedules for preparation of the daily and monthly key moments, throughout the year. The right mind set is essential and a positive mind set must always be connected to the ‘doing’ of the work. This point is central to her work and ideas as she welcomes, with pleasure, the same group of seasonal harvesters, each year « for the meaning that they find, as they work ».
Determined and confident, she works to reveal the authenticity and reality of the wines, she loves, at Château Haut-Bergey.
When he arrived, in 2012, at Château Haut-Bergey, Francois Prouteau had, already worked for three years on the Garcin estate.
With his past viticultural origins at Bonnezeaux in the Anjou region and a family education concentrated around wine, his interests in making wine and how and where the vines grow, started early in his life. As a red wine enthusiast and in a search of new horizons, he moved to the Gironde in 2008, to follow a BTS viticulture and oenology course, as well as studying for a Quality licence at L’Institut de Vayres. Via the BTS work and study programme, he got to know the Garcin family properties well, by working, throughout his studies at their Rive Droite holdings at Pomerol and Saint Emilion.
Freshly graduated and just as the former maitre de chais had departed, he was asked to ensure the development and continuity of the work at Château Haut-Bergey. At this point, in 2012, he engaged a new team and since then, he has never looked back.
He has experienced the changes driven by Paul Garcin, with whom he shares, the same
taste for wines that express the land from which they come. From this approach, there
emerged a new vision which enables him to develop a more personal wine making
method, guaranteeing truly authentic, pure and fresh tasting wines.
Conscious of the necessary time needed to guarantee all of the benefits of biodynamic wines, he fully realizes the changes that need to be made within a team of people. It is, a particularly small and cohesive team – unusual for an estate of over 40 hectares, which enhances the timeless conception of the world of wine – professional and friendly, if not family-minded and dedicated to precise research and the pleasure of sharing.