The Family

The Family
THE CHATONNET FAMILY
... Winegrowers for over two centuries


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Records going back to the 18th century mention the Chatonnet family's involvement in the world of Bordeaux wine.

Noted historian Henri Enjalbert states. "The Chatonnets at La Madeleine were responsible for introducing new vineyard methods to the upper part of Saint Emilion."

The Chatonnets were true pioneers in recognising the effect of the soil on the wine they made. They were also aware that the soil was not sufficient to produce a great wine: proper winemaking methods were also required.

The history of Bordeaux wine and that of the Chatonnet family have been closely linked since the 18th century. Their name as been associated with such prestigious Saint Emilion estates as Chateaux Madelaine,Fonroque and Ausone.

Imbued with two centuries of family history and moved by the same spirit as their forebears, Jeanine and André Chatonnet purchased Chateau Haut-Chaigneau in 1967. In doing so, they linked their name with one of the leading wines in the Lalande de Pomerol appellation. Jeanine,André and their son Pascal have combined their different skills to develop the reputation of the Chatonnet estates. They work together in the same spirit as the leading Bordeaux wine families have always done.

 

==== Family's members ====
 
Pascal Chatonnet : THE WINE ALCHEMIST :

In light of his university and professional career, no title suits Pascal Chatonnet better than "chemist". But this descritption is far too simplistche he is not just a chemist, he is an alchemist.

Pascal Chatonnet is highly skilled in the complex alchemy of wine, wich requires an excellent knowledge of virtually all aspects of viticulture and winemaking, as well as possessing the innate ability to share is experience with an international clientele.

Pascal Chatonnet is consulting oenologist at Château Haut-Chaigneau, and has created his own wine estate, Château La Sergue, château l'Archange.

It is rare to find a single person in today's wine world with such multi-faceted talent and experience. Pascal Chatonnet achieves exceptional balance and harmony through the combination of the traditional Bordeaux notion of 'terroir' with international viticulturl practice;natural intuition and instinct with analytical quality control;generations of experience with research and the discovery of new techniques. The result is a range of wines wich express deep respect for tradition and experience whilst reflecting, in exemplary style, the progression achieved through modern winemaking methods.

Herein lies the originality of the Chatonnet wineyards.

André Chatonnet : THE VINE DOCTOR

André Chatonnet had a solid physique and the knowing smile of a patriarch. He was not afraid to speak his mind, and his well-known by all the winegrowers of Saint-Emilion and Pomerol for his strong personality.Before acquiring Haut-Chaigneau,André used to advise winegrowers and sell them products for use in the vineyards.His knowledge of the region and his passion for viticulture have made him a sort of "vine doctor", who is often consulted when problems arise. 

André Chatonnet had put his understanding of drainage and replanting to good use at Haut-Chaigneau. He redefined all the vineyard plots and made major improvements as regards the choice of grape varieties.
Haut-Chaigneau is now planted with carefully-studied proportions of Merlot,Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc.The wine is mad using the most up-to-date techniques, without abandonning the traditional methods that remain the heart of fine wine production in Bordeaux.

 


Jeanine Chatonnet : THE DECOR ARTIST

It is not due to any strong feminist tendencies, but rather because of her personal taste that Jeanine Chatonnet is the most artistic member of the family.She naturally took over decorating Château Haut-Chaigneau, as well as designing superb floral displays, visitor reception, organising wine tastings etc...

She asked Christian Chartres design thez château's furniture, and artist Michel Brosseau to paint frescoes dedicated to the glory of wine.

Jeanine Chatonnet feels most at ease indoors, with customers of Château Haut-Chaigneau, but also oversees the splendid laid-out gardens. Squirrels are often seen scurring across the attractive grounds.

 

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