Léon Verhaeghe from Morsleede in Flanders, left his native country in the early 20th century to settle in south-western France. His son Charles together with his wife Marie-Thérèse started a farm with mixed cultures in 1958 planting some vines on the property, and adding one hectare of vineyards in three different plots every year.
While still distilling lavender, Charles bottled his first wine in 1973. His sons, Jean-Marc and Pascal belong to the second generation. After having studied enology in Macon Davayé, wine making experiences in Burgundy and at Saintsbury in the Napa Valley. Charles decided to take over the estate, together with his brother Jean-Marc; a qualified oenologist who obtained his first wine making experience at La Tour Blanche in Sauternes.
While Jean-Marc is responsible for the vineyards, Pascal takes care of the wines and their distribution. From the beginning, their project is based on a great complicity and the convergence of their points of view.
It all has been put to a test in 1995 with a difficult vintage, with 80% of the vineyards damaged by hailstorms. Jean-Marc and Pascal question their way of farming, concluding that they have to reveal the potential of the terroir and to lower the yields.
“There is an unearthly dimension with vines, you always get more in return than you gave.” By building up the terroir and getting closer to nature, the vines gained balance, giving more taste and quality to the grapes. The style of Château du Cèdre was born.