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Proust Q&A: Séverine Frerson

Séverine Frerson-Gomez is deputy cellar master at Piper-Heidsieck. Born and raised in Champagne, she studied oenology at the University of Reims before joining the Comité Champagne in 1997, where she worked for two years. She then took up a position at Veuve Clicquot, where she worked alongside cellar master Jacques Péters. In 2002, she joined Piper-Heidsieck, where she held a range of roles, before her promotion to head of winemaking for Piper-Heidsieck and Charles Heidsieck, followed by, in March this year, her elevation to the position of deputy cellar master for Piper-Heidsieck alongside Régis Camus, the celebrated cellar master of the house. Séverine is married with two daughters and enjoys sport, especially playing tennis and jogging.

Severine Frerson
Séverine Frerson. Photo credit: Michel Jolyot

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Holidaying with my family in Minorca, the smallest of the Balearic islands, enjoying Piper-Heidsieck Brut and grilled fish for dinner.

What is your greatest fear?

Being stuck in an elevator.

Who do you most admire?

I have always been inspired by Coco Chanel. She was a strong woman, determined and creative. She has been able to exist in a world of businessmen and impose her ideas and style.

What is your greatest extravagance?

To have the luxury to play with wines coming from more than one hundred crus and each vintage of the last 20 years, all of them passionately selected by my predecessors.

What is your current state of mind?

Cheerful with my new job.

What is the quality you most like in a man?

A sense of humour.

Who or what is the greatest love of your life?

My family.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

What’s done is done.

When and where were you happiest?

Yesterday, today and tomorrow.

If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?

I would like to be 4 inches taller.

Which talent would you most like to have?

To travel through time, although I do it sometimes when I open old vintages.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

My children.

Where would you most like to live?

Barcelona
. This city combines heritage and tradition with culture and museums, along with nature – it has the seaside.

What is your most treasured possession?

The very first tasting notebook of Daniel Thibault, dated 1973. (The late cellar master of Charles Heidsieck and Piper-Heidsieck).

What is your most marked characteristic?

My fighting spirit.

Who is your favourite writer?

Émile Zola. My father gave me the opportunity to read La Bête Humaine and I was impressed by the hero’s wife, who beautifully represents strength and passion.

Who is your hero of fiction?

Tintin. He likes adventure, he is respectful, and he is caring of his social and natural environments.

What is it that you most dislike? 

Injustice

What is your greatest regret?

Not to have had the time to build a family of eight children. Yet each cuvée that I make is like a child to me.

What is your motto?

There are no problems, only solutions.

Who would be your ideal dinner party guests and what three wines would you serve them?

Woody Allen, Salvador Dali and Bono. I am sure their creative universe would match Rosé Sauvage, Rare and Sublime perfectly!

It looks like you're in Asia, would you like to be redirected to the Drinks Business Asia edition?

Yes, take me to the Asia edition No