Denise Capbern-Gasqueton, long-time owner of Chateau Calon Segur in Saint Estèphe, has died aged 87.
Born in 1924, Madame Gasqueton – as she was invariably known – was born Denise Agostini until her marriage to Philippe Gasqueton, whose family had owned Calon Ségur since 1894.
Following Philippe’s death in September 1995, she took over the running of the estate. Like her husband 15 years before her, Madame Gasqueton died peacefully in her sleep, on the eve of harvest.
Known for her intensely private, sometimes irascible, nature – she was renowned for turning away journalists and buyers, whatever their status – she was also an attentive owner, and her intelligence and expertise were legendary in the region.
She was proud of making an old-style, traditional Médoc wine with elegance and finesse.
‘Calon Ségur has been the first chateau we visit during the en primeurs every year for the past ten years,’ Simon Staples at Berry Bros told Decanter.com.
‘We love the simplicity of the set-up – one huge room, one large bottle, Madame Gasqueton always on hand to answer all questions personally, but without any room for nonsense. She has given the wine enormous class and charisma since she took over. She will be missed.
The family also own Chateau Capbern Gasqueton, a Cru Bourgeois estate also in Saint Estèphe. Madame Gasqueton’s daughter Hélène, and her grand-daughter Isabelle, will continue to run both properties.
The funeral was held at the local church in Saint Estèphe this morning, Tuesday 6 September.
Written by Jane Anson in Bordeaux