A family story and a strong environmental commitment.
The Gasparoux Family
Jean-Baptiste Gasparoux was born in 1874, in Davignac in central France. This is the same village where Jean Gaye-Bordas, the very first of the Corrèze travelling merchants and the man at the root of the fabled Meymac-près-Bordeaux story, was born.
Faced, like so many others of the period, with the hardship of life on the beautiful but impoverished Plateau de Millevaches, Jean-Baptiste joined the exodus from the Corrèze region and left to sell wine before, in 1902, establishing himself as a merchant in Libourne. In 1934, Fernand Gasparoux – a merchant like his father – fulfilled his dream to become a wine grower when he purchased Château Ferrand, a small estate in Pomerol measuring about 3.5 hectares.
Over the years, the estate grew both in size and renown and now extends to about 12 hectares of Fernand’s beloved adopted terroir.
In 1975, he was able to acquire several hectares of vineyard on the exclusive Pomerol plateau and from there developed Château Haut Ferrand.
In 1981, Fernand’s son Henry took over management of the estate. He managed to carry out this role alongside his other functions as professor of science at the University of Bordeaux and then head of the École Nationale de Chimie-Physique in Bordeaux until his retirement from academic life in 2001.
Since then he has dedicated all his time to the estate which, over time, has undergone quite striking changes, from sales developments and building renovations to updated vinification equipment and newly built welcome areas. These projects have been undertaken with the objective of retaining both the human aspect as well as the family vision of the business. Progress continued in 2018, when the estate joined the wine tourism movement.
Now 83 years old and ably assisted by his two sons, Jean-Pascal and Philippe, Henry still enthusiastically oversees his vineyard while the fifth generation of Gasparoux is also present and correct in the form of Matthieu Gasparoux, an agricultural engineer and oenologist.
Three generations are now working together, uniting tradition and modernity, to ensure the Gasparoux family story at Pomerol endures for years to come.
This family story would have no future without the men and women who work so hard for the estate’s success.
The family is proud to introduce you to its team: Bérengère Cariteau, Head of administration and wine tourism; Mathieu Garcia, Head of viticulture; Denis Gombeau, Wine storehouse manager; Stéphanie Loreau, general vineyard employee and Jérémie Rainaud, work-study scheme participant.
A family committed to respecting the earth…
Wine growers and producers are generally true earth-lovers and these days they work hard to integrate good environmental practices into their estate management.
Château Ferrand is no exception; since 2019 the estate has had the HEV3 certification and ISO 14001 within the Bordeaux wine SME (Environmental Management System).
These certificates guarantee quality, reassuring customers of the estate’s daily commitment to respect neighbouring plants and animals and to try as much as possible to reduce the negative impact that its activity has on the environment, particularly by reducing chemical and neurotoxic products. Equally, the controlled appellation of origin (AOC) certification demonstrated its environmental commitments in its 2021 updated specification, which forbade chemical weeding.
Efforts in this regard at the Château are now going even further, with the estate starting work towards its organic certification in the summer of 2021. This approach, a turning point in managing the vineyard, has been taken to heart by every employee at the company, all of whom are fully committed to taking action.
This environmental commitment also extends to the day-to-day work of the offices and storehouses which take care to manage costs and consumption of paper, water and electricity.
What does actually mean by organic vineyard? At Château Ferrand, the transition to organic farming covers issues such using local horse manure and the considerable role of green fertiliser. This means that the estate only uses natural fertilisers , therefore helping soil regeneration.
Cereals and legumes are sown annually in between rows of vines in order to provide the soil with nitrogen and organic matter and therefore enrich the microbial life of our vineyard.
In 2020, four Ouessant sheep also joined the team and are now pampered relentlessly while they carry out their role to keep ditches tidy in summer and maintain vineyard plots in winter. They provide their own manure and are an irresistible source of joy for all our team!
All the daily actions taken by our estate team are going to contribute, in their own way, to conserving the wonderful Pomerol terroir and its biodiversity.