The Teycheney family
The Teycheney family has a twofold vocation faithfully maintained through the generations: the world of the public buildings and works sector, and Bordeaux wine.
Patrick Teycheney is very much attuned to this tradition. He created his own construction company at the age of 22, and was determined to go further still. It was the beginning of an adventure that led him to create Colisée, which in 25 years became the fourth-largest retirement home operator.
He withdrew from operational management of the Colisée group in 2015 and returned to the wines of Bordeaux. His aim was to achieve excellence by combining respect for tradition with innovation. Joined by his daughter Caroline, who left the luxury industry in 2015 to come and work with him, they decided to buy two Saint-Emilion Grand Cru châteaux, and assist them in their “biodynamic” transformation.
Patrick’s wife Evelyne also threw herself into this return to the countryside, buying an olive grove in Catalonia in the scrublands of Lerida province (Spain), where her great-grandfather once produced a top-quality olive oil.
For Patrick, Evelyne and Caroline, there is much in common between AOP olive oil and AOC Bordeaux wine: the quality of the terroir, respect for the soil and plants, and the talent of a devoted team.
Patrick Teycheney and his daughter Caroline
Patrick and Caroline Teycheney with Nicolas Géré
Patrick Teycheney assembled a new team with complementary talents to work at the two estates:
Nicolas Géré, the vineyard manager, a student of Jean-Louis Chave (from a prominent family of L’Hermitage since 1481), who needs no introduction. Nicolas works in the footsteps of Dominique Massenot (Amisol) and Margarethe Chappelle (oenocristal), a specialist in sensitive crystallisation. When Nicolas talks about wine, he is inspired by a philosophy – biodynamics – and a passion: his love of vines and wine.
Jean-Claude et Jean-François Berrouet, father and son, both remarkable oenologists, provide valuable advice ensuring that the Teycheney estates achieve truly great wines.
Biodynamics: our choice, and our commitment to the future.
Biodynamic agriculture is based on the concept of “agricultural organisms”, which consists of seeing all farms as living organisms. The aim is to create the best balance for plants in their own environment. It involves applying the principles developed by Rudolf Steiner in 1924: those of Anthroposophy.
The Châteaux Fleur de Lisse and L’Etampe have used organic and biodynamic agriculture since 2017.
This method uses preparations made from plant, animal and mineral materials (cow horn, silica, herbal teas and plant decoctions) governed by the influence of lunar and planetary rhythms.
The lunar and planetary biodynamic calendar is applied according to cosmic rhythms for all work on the grapes in the winehouse.
The sowing schedule (“leaf days”, “flower days”, “fruit days” and “root days”) determines the days when sowing takes place in the vines. This approach fosters an ideal vegetative process and limits the development of parasites. You could say that “plants come to the aid of plants!”, as Nicolas Géré poetically puts it.
The Fleur de Lisse farm
But there is also a joyous and lively atmosphere, where secondary wildlife becomes the ally of domestic fauna. This is why we have created a farm at Château Fleur de Lisse, home to a whole little singing world of two- and four-footed creatures – hens, geese and sheep – in the midst of flowers and beehives, nesting boxes and fruit trees – the dwelling-places of bees and numerous species of pollinating birds.
In the end, biodynamics means making wine “like before”: by working on the “path from the vine to the grape harvest”, not only on the precious wine served in our glasses. Working the soil biodynamically primarily involves cultivating the earth at each stage until the grapes are harvested. It must never be relegated to second place behind the subtle action of cellar and vat.
Nicolas Géré, the vineyard manager of the Vignobles Jade, works in close collaboration with Margarethe Chappelle, a specialist in “sensitive crystallisation”. This scientific method applied to wine makes it possible to study the image of plants and living soils, and thus determine their state of vitality and health by observing their prints, expressed in the form of crystalline signs.
Using this method, working the vines consists of enhancing the health, life and fertility of soils and plants, all of which protects the terroir in the long-term, and thus future consumers.