Léon Verhaeghe from Morsleede in Flanders, left his homeland in the early 20th century to settle in southwestern France. His son Charles started a mixed-culture farm with his wife Marie- Thérèse in 1958, planted a few vines on the property and added a hectare of vineyard each year on three different plots.
The call of the vines
While still distilling lavender, Charles bottled his first wine in 1973. His sons, Jean-Marc and Pascal, belong to the second generation. Pascal, passionate about motorcycles, discovered or rediscovered the vineyard while visiting a friend in Burgundy, Jean-Marie Guffens in 1980.
"During the 'Route du Bol d'Or,' a motorcycle race, I stopped just to greet Jean-Marie ... I stayed a few days and did my first real harvest."
Eight years later, after studying oenology at Mâcon Davayé and having experience making wine in Burgundy, Pascal decided to take over the estate, along with his brother Jean-Marc, a qualified oenologist who gained his first experience at La Tour Blanche in Sauternes.
While Jean-Marc is in charge of the vineyards, Pascal takes care of the wines and their distribution. From the beginning, their project was based on a great agreement and the convergence of their views.
It was all put to the test by a difficult year, in which 80% of the vineyards were damaged by hailstorms. Jean-Marc and Pascal wondered if their way of farming was the right one, having to show the potential of the region and thus reduce yields.
"There is an unearthly dimension with vines, you always get back more than you gave." By building up the terroir and getting closer to nature, the vines achieved balance, giving the grapes more flavor and quality. The style of Château du Cèdre was born.
Le Cèdre Diffusion
Le Cèdre Diffusion was created in 1995 to commercialize the wines of the partner estates in Cahors, where they also advise in the vineyards and cellars. The fact that these partners increase the number of bottles bearing their own name each year is a real sign of success for du Cèdre. It is their contribution to the development of the 'appelation' Cahors.
Cahors has a unique and excellent terroir. This means that you can make great and complex wines that will evolve for years, but you can also make simpler and lighter wines with similar characteristics because of their origins.