NEW YORK - Caroline Frey's achievements include: mountain marathon runner, equestrian champion, pianist and coming top of her Bordeaux University Oenology Class of 2002. From this, you can see the focus, dedication and commitment that she applies to everything she does, which now includes managing the Frey family wineries: Chateau La Lagune (acquired in 2000) and Paul Jablouet Aîné, producer of the famed Hermitage La Chapelle (acquired in 2006). The quality of the wines, at both properties, have been undergoing a renaissance and show Caroline's total commitment to quality.
Where were you born?
I was born in Reims, Champagne. As you can tell, vineyards are always close to my heart and wine flows through my blood!
What was your best memory growing up?
My most precious memories have always included my family. I had the chance to grow up in a very close-knit family and spent a lot of time with my two younger sisters. My childhood is graced with a wealth of great memories that are for me the true foundations of who I am today.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I took up the sport of horse riding at a very early age, and was in France's Junior Jumping Team. Up until I was 20 years old, when I entered university, I had the ambition of having a career in the sport.
Where/what did you study?
I began my studies in Champagne and then completed my studies as an oenologist at the University of Bordeaux, where I met my mentor Denis Dubourdieu, who has been a constant guide and inspiration to me.
Any formal wine training?
I graduated from the University of Bordeaux in 2002 with a degree in Oenology. Studying oenology was a true inspiration, and one that ignited my passion for the art of viticulture and winemaking.
Who was your mentor?
In the horse riding: Michel Robert. In the wine: Denis Dubourdieu. In life: my father, Jean Jacques and my mother Sylvie
What are your views on agriculture: Sustainable? Organic? Biodynamic?
I identify most closely with the movement of winemakers who respect their terroir and their vines, without the labels of 'organic' or 'biodynamic'. I simply do what is best for the vines, for the terroir and for the wines - which is almost always a most natural approach. Our viticultural practices at Château La Lagune and Paul Jaboulet feature a mixture of organic and biodynamic farming methods - choosing what is best for each of our parcels without being limited to only one approach. The ultimate goal is for our vineyards, our soils and our wines to be ALIVE!
What was the best advice you ever received?
There are always solutions, and to always look further beyond and behind each obstacle you face.
Outside wine, what is your passion?
Wine is more than a passion - it is my way of life. Most of my activities revolve around wine. My retreat from the vineyards, however, are the mountains. I am enamored by their beauty. In summer I take the trails and participate in mountain runs like the Zermatt Marathon - 42kms at an altitude of 1900! Winter is reserved purely for skiing!!
What was the last music you downloaded?
Asaf Avidan & The Mojos - One Day/Reckoning Song ( Wankelmut Remix). In our home, we are very particular about music as it is a great passion of my husband's!
What is the last movie you saw?
Skyfall. I confess that I am a great fan of all James Bond movies!
What's your guilty secret?
Chocolate; preferably Swiss chocolate.
What "addiction" would you most like to give up?
Are you superstitious?
When the issue is important...yes!
Sunday: Brunch or Lunch?
Lunch. I am not a brunch addict. On Sundays I like to get up early, make a real breakfast for myself and the family and then have a real lunch. However, if I am in Paris, I never miss a brunch at the Jean Georges restaurant Le Market.
Favorite hotel in the world?
Relais San Maurizio, Italy, Piedmont. Ideally, my visit should coincide with the annual Alba White Truffle Festival.
Favorite local hotel?
In the Luberon, Provence, I recently stayed at Hotel La Coquillade. I would highly recommend the hotel and, the region is naturally magnificent.
Favorite local restaurant?
Alain Senderens, Paris.
Favorite restaurant in the world?
Bar Boulud, London.
Favorite place to vacation?
Favorite city to visit?
Favorite wine/vintage, that is not yours?
In Bordeaux, Léoville Las Cases, in the Vallée du Rhône, Hermitage Cuvée Cathelin 1991, Jean Louis Chave.
Favorite shop to buy clothes?
Christian Louboutin of course!
If you can choose your perfect last supper before leaving this world, what would it be, who would it be with and what would you drink with it?
Without hesitation, it would be my family. At the table there would be Billecart-Salmon Cuvée Elisabeth, Château La Lagune 1982, Hermitage La Chapelle 1961 and a Sauternes, Doisy Daene 1990. For the menu, I would give carte blanche to any of my favourite great chefs - Anne Sophie Pic, for example.