From the nineteenth-century bear trainer to the young winegrowers of the twenty-century every family has a history. The agricultural France of the late nineteenth century was a hard life, and many decided to leave home in search of a better life abroad. It is in this climate that their history begins, The Ariégeois village of Ercé located in the Pyrenean Piedmont.
Artaud returned to France in 1912 and discovered Château de Tariquet and immediately fell in love with the site, but unfortunately, his assets were insufficient to acquire the house. It was then that he appealed to his son Jean-Pierre, who remained in New York where he had married Pauline, a pretty young woman from Ariège. Jean-Pierre, a bartender, was mixing valuable cocktails in a trendy bar. Father and son reunited and together they acquired the Château de Tariquet. But, ruined by the phylloxera, there were only seven unfortunate hectares left of the vineyard.
No beautiful story without drama
One thousand nine hundred fourteen remains a terrible year, that of the beginning of the First World War. Jean-Pierre Artaud, an ardent patriot, will join France to fight, be wounded by a bayonet in a rough and bloody close combat action he lost so much blood, that part of his memory will lack for many years.
Pierre Grasso was born in France out of Spanish parents, from the Sierra de Guara. The other side of the Pyrenees. As a boy he started on an early age working the fields, he would not attend school. He has a fierce desire to devour life somewhere else. During his military service, he joins the battalion of Joinville where the best French competitors of various disciplines are selected, and he brilliantly passes his certificate of study.
Preparing another chapter
Soon, Hélène and Pierre started a wine mission in Bas-Armagnac. They will have four children: Julia, Christiane, Françoise, and Yves. Julia and Yves continue the profession. From 1972, they will constitute their first company with their father, will develop the sales of Bas-Armagnac produced at the château. In 1982, while the market was stammering, they chose to produce white wines. There is no beautiful story without that, in the end, there is a note of hope. Armin and Rémy, son of Yves, now become winegrowers and prepare to write another chapter.
Returning to civilian life, Pierre stops in Bordeaux where he works in a barber shop. 1939 was the end of his Barber-shop career and the general mobilization of the Second World War leads him to a new life. The Nazis captured his battalion as prisoners of war. He manages to get repatriated and enters into resistance in the south-west of France, in Éauze, near the Château de Tariquet where he met Hélène. The the rest of the story is hardly difficult to imagine.
Around the world
Its inhabitants had a specialty: the training of bears. In all logic, the young Artaud exercised the curious profession of bear-show. With his two bears, history has forgotten the names, he went around the world, crossed seas and oceans and eventually arrived in the United States of America, probably lived happily until the day when homesickness took him back to find a place to spend his remaining days.
Amnesia, he remained in French hospitals until 1922, when he returned to New York, where his wife Pauline, week after week, never missed the boat from Le Havre, always hoping of the return of her husband. Unfortunately for Pauline, attached to the modern life of New York, they decided to leave the United States for France. Their return was delighted by the birth of a baby girl they called Hélène.