François Despagne

As owners of Château Grand Corbin-Despagne in Saint-Émilion for over two centuries, some seven generations of the Despagne family have shared the same love for a vineyard and respect for its traditions.


The story of Château Ampélia is that of a meeting, a challenge and a conviction. In 1996, three years before acquiring the Ampélia lands, François Despagne inherited the Grand Corbin-Despagne estate from his family. He thus became the seventh generation of the family at the helm of this Saint-Émilion property. François then eagerly sought a new challenge and created a new vineyard – this time, not in Saint-Émilion, but in Castillon-Côtes de Bordeaux, the neighbouring appellation. Château Ampélia, however, needed a new start. Nothing existed at the property apart from the vines. Everything else had to be created. Cellars needed building, a farm had to be set up, and a wine had to be perfected in order to create a new story, the story of Ampélia.

“I aim to produce a precise, well-defined wine that respects its terroir and its identity.”


“The common threads that run through my work as a wine grower are anticipation, respect and stability, in order to make the best wine possible in each vintage,” says François Despagne, who applies the same golden rule in each of his vineyards. “Through careful observation and decision-making throughout the whole of the growing season, I aim to produce a precise, well-defined wine that respects its terroir and its identity.” At every stage of the winemaking process, François Despagne demonstrates a deep respect for the terroir and its identity. Constantly close to his land, he even began the changeover to organic farming in 2010, thus reinforcing his commitment to quality and high standards. The vineyard is cultivated in accordance with organic farming standards and monitored by Qualisud. It was awarded “Organic Wine” certification in 2018.

Château Ampélia - Castillon Caracteres