Towards the end of the 1960s, Véronique and Aimé Guibert launched themselves on a wine adventure,
following in the footsteps of the monks at Aniane Abbey 13 centuries ago.
They were the first generation and the creators of the current Mas de Daumas Gassac. Véronique Guibert de la Vaissiere is an ethnologist, specializing in the myths and traditions of Celtic Ireland. Originally from the Aveyronne, Aimé Guibert came from an old family of glovers and tanners in Millau.
The management of the property and the vinifications were subsequently transferred to us, the second generation composed of Samuel, Gaël, Roman and Basile. Today, We uphold the values of respect for “Mother Nature” and for the pure expression of the terroir: the foundations of the property’s wines since its creation.
Gaël, Amélien & Basile Guibert
Our greatest strength has been our capacity to live and work together. We have been working at the Mas since the 2000s. After the death of our father, the founder of the Mas de Daumas Gassac, in May 2016, we have taken over complete control of the property.
Since then, we have continued our father’s innovative work, increasingly focusing on elegance and freshness rather than more tannic characteristics.
Today, the domaine’s spirit is very much one of fraternal camaraderie. We all have different responsibilities in its management.
Ethnologist and Ireland specialist Véronique Guibert de la Vaissière and her husband Aimé, a tanner and glove manufacturer in Millau, fell in love with an old, abandoned farmhouse in the unspoilt rural setting of the Gassac valley near the ancient abbey of Aniane.
On the recommendation of their Aveyron friend, Professor Henri Enjalbert, a geologist pecialising in the relationship between soils and grapes, they planted 17,000 non-cloned Cabernet-Sauvignon grafts sourced from top Bordeaux properties. An underground cellar was built on the site of the former Gallo-Roman watermill adjacent to the farmhouse, over the cold spring water from the river Gassac.
Oenologist Emile Peynaud, a consultant to Châteaux Margaux, Haut-Brion, La Mission Haut-Brion and La Lagune, followed progress at a distance and gave winemaking advice for the first vintage. Bottled in 1980 under the ‘Vin de Table’ label, the 1978 vintage was blended from 80% Cabernet-Sauvignon and 20% Malbec, Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Pinot and Tannat. Using a technique unheard of that time in the region, half of the 17,866 bottles produced that year were offered for sale to family, friends and a handful of restaurateurs. The futures or en primeur system was thus born, and is still used today.
vintage marked the first media endorsement of Mas de Daumas Gassac red wines, hailed by the magazine Gault&Millau as ‘Languedoc’s Château Lafite’. In 1986, white Mas de Daumas Gassac, a uniquely crafted wine showing huge aromatic complexity, made its debut. This consummate wine, designed to fully preserve fruit aromas, is primarily a blend of Viognier, Chardonnay, Petit Manseng and Chenin Blanc, fused with around fifteen other grape varieties from Old Europe which include Neherleschol from Israel, Khodorni from Lebanon and Tchila from Armenia.
The arrival of rosé Frizant completed the estate’s range of wines, which even today still numbersthree – a red, a white and a rosé. In 1991, the Guilhem and Figaro labels made their debut, ushering in the Moulin de Gassac selection which currently totals 2.2 million bottles.
Four of Véronique and Aimé Guibert’s five sons – Samuel, Gaël, Roman and Basile – have worked at the property and since 2009, these close-knit siblings have taken over estate management.
We are motivated by a desire to respect our terroir, and in so doing, to give expression to authentic wines.
« Respect »
If our philosophy had to be summarized in one word, then this would have to be it. We are motivated by the desire to produce authentic wines, that are a genuine reflection of our sublime, complex terroir. On this basis, we think of ourselves more as go-betweens than alchemists, with a desire to express the soul and flavours of the terroir in our wines. This is a huge task, of which we humbly try to be worthy every day that we spend in the vineyard and the winery; above all, our goal is to respect the wild splendour of the upper Gassac Valley. For this reason, we chose to create small areas of vines, that stand as clearings in the immense garrigue forest that dominates the landscape.
This respect is expressed at three levels: