Alain Combard was born in Salon-de-Provence and is a keen aviator like his father who left his son a dairy farm near Chablis. This was a blessing, for, not only did Alain meet his wife Gaby but was bitten by the winemaking bug. Alain Combard is a very willing man who does not hesitate in carrying out something once his mind is made up.
In 1968 Alain met Michel Laroche, a young Chablis winemaker, at an aviation club in the region; he was also keen on aviation. They decided to set up a partnership to create one of the leading vineyards in the region. After working together for 22 years, Alain, who had had the time to train as a winemaker, decided to spread his wings. He travelled the various winemaking regions of France to search for the vineyard of his dreams and to set up his own business.
In November 1991, it was raining over the Mediterranean, as it often does! Alain turned up at Saint-André-de-Figuière upon a narrow road lined with olive trees and was immediately taken with the 44 acre vineyard. The following year, in June, Alain signed the purchase agreement just before the harvest. No worries for the white wine as Alain but his ‘chablisien’ expertise to work. However, for the rosé, he had to work twice as hard. He rapidly became aware of one thing: that a Provence rosé was worthy of a great white.
His mission was accomplished. After several regattas around the Isle of Porquerolles and several harvests later, Alain Combard discovered a passion for the mourvèdre grape variety, which he shares with his son, François, who came to join him on the Domain. That devil of a grape variety was to make him unfaithful to the whites and rosés, and thanks to it he was able to make one of the best reds of the Côte d’Azur. After such success, he called upon his daughters to help him build up a family business which is now one of the most serious and ambitious in the South of France.
It is Delphine, the eldest daughter of Gaby and Alain Combard, who looks after the distribution and shipping of the wines after they have been bottled. A job that she carries out perfectly well with her degree in economic science from the Sorbonne. She also has experience of managing Club Med villages in several locations such as Bora-Bora, Turkey and Malaysia. For eight years she also managed with great enthusiasm, the accommodation side of a family holiday village in Biarritz.
It was on a beach that she met her partner, Edouard, who is a French kite surfing champion and a paraglider. In 2004 after a call from her father, she joined the family vineyard with the keen intention of perfecting her knowledge of wines. Delphine is fully aware of the beauty of the site and the great variety of tasks to be accomplished. Here being polyvalent is essential. She shares a keen interest in an organic vegetable garden with her brother François and is convinced that each citizen has an obligation towards nature.
Delphine Combard has a soft spot for the red wine « François », which she likes to serve with cheese. But like every member of the family, she adores the rosé. All that is now left for her to do is to get to know her adoptive region a little better and come up with some good Provençal dishes inspired by her mother Gaby.