NEW YORK - Richard Geoffroy has been Chef de Cave for Dom Pérignon since 1990. He was born in the heart of Champagne's Chardonnay vineyards in 1954 and began his wine career in the Napa Valley, with Domaine Chandon. Articulate, passionate and highly qualified, he alone is responsible for deciding whether or not to declare a Dom Pérignon vintage - always seeking a wine with both complexity and harmony. He believes disciplined organization and management of his time are the basic requirements for maintaining equilibrium in his life and work.
Where were you born?
In Vertus, a village in the wine region of Champagne.
What was your best memory growing up?
September, over long period of time; the emotions of having to go back to school mixed with ones of another harvest at the family estate.
Where/what did you study?
Medicine, then Oenology, in Reims.
Any formal wine training?
Yes, at the National School of Oenology.
Who was your mentor?
Dominique Foulon, my predecessor at Dom Pérignon. A man of a few words.
What are your views on agriculture: Sustainable? Organic? Biodynamic?
Sustainable viticulture is still the best option as we speak. One has yet to come up with something more progressive, proving effective for the entire region of Champagne.
What was the best advice you ever received?
To develop a capacity for listening, something I learnt from my time studying Medicine.
What was the last music you downloaded?
"Superlove" by Lenny Kravitz.
What is the last movie you saw?
"Death in Venice" by Luchino Visconti, for the 4th time.
What's your guilty secret?
White truffle with Dom Pérignon.
Sunday: Brunch or Lunch?
A large brunch with family and friends. I designed my home for such special moments.
Who was the first person you spoke to today?
My son Charles, on Skype. He is working in Shanghai.
How do you keep in shape?
By listening to my body.
Diet or eat everything?
Eat everything, sensibly, ie: only when special enough.
What are you reading now?
"On China" by Henry Kissinger.
Favorite hotel in the world?
Upper House, in Hong Kong. So well named. Weightless.
Favorite local hotel?
Le Pavillon de la Reine, in Paris. Hidden at the heart of exciting historical Le Marais.
Favorite local restaurant?
Jean-François Piège, in Paris. Super talented, with amazing erudition of the history of French cuisine is amazing.
Favorite restaurant in the world?
Kitcho, in Kyoto. A true art form. Knowing Chef Tukuoka allowed me to learn so much more of Japan.
Favorite place to vacation?
Australia. A continent of the extremes. So special to me as I worked there in a previous life.
Favorite city to visit?
New York, for the sheer energy. Fascinating. Addictive..
Favorite wine/vintage from your winery?
The latest 2002 vintage of Dom Pérignon Rosé. Possibly the closest ever to the ideal of Dom Pérignon.
Favorite wine/vintage, that is not yours?
Château d'Yquem, any vintage.
Favorite shop to buy clothes?
Christian Dior, in Paris.
The wine snobs. They work against the cause of wine.
A greater connection of Dom Pérignon to its followers and lovers.
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?
It would be with the man Dom Pérignon himself, whatever food and drink.