Ils sont artiste, cheffe étoilée, designer ou apiculteur, pilote automobile ou créatrice de mode. Leur point commun ? Ces personnalités glamour ou au cœur de la vie culturelle, économique et sociale régionale sont les moteurs de l’actualité azuréenne. Découvrez sans filtre le témoignage de leur parcours, leurs rêves, leurs ambitions et leurs projets à venir.

December 2023

Jean- Noeël Laquèbe

The olive tree keeper

“The Cailletier produces an olive variety called caillette, typical of Nice.”

By Caroline Stefani - Photo Jean-Michel Sordello
Photo Jean-Michel Sordello

Champsoleil is about passing down knowledge. From generation to generation, and then between land lovers. Jean-Noël Laquèbe and his wife Véronique fell in love with the 7 hectares of land at Champsoleil and its “Cailletier” fields and decided to start producing olive oil. “We took over the estate from its founders, Mr and Mrs Derepas, intending to preserve what they had set up,” explains Jean-Noël Laquèbe. “We come from the wine world; we have a Lirac vineyard in the Gard. When we saw this olive grove in Nice, we were instantly able to project ourselves into this production, and we realised that these two activities could be complementary.” The organic farming philosophy is also in keeping with their values. “We work together as a family and use biodynamic farming methods. It’s important for us.” The Champsoleil farm is home to the Cailletier, the famous PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) olive variety from Nice used to make the Lou Divin Préludi cuvée. This award-winning oil, with distinctive mild flavours, results from traditional savoir-faire and a quest for perfection. “We collaborate with a team of professionals who have been working in the olive grove for many years, each with their individual responsibilities besides being multi-skilled. Since taking over the business, all production processes have been kept in place to guarantee the quality and excellence objectives set by our predecessors.” This product superiority has attracted the attention of some of the biggest names in the culinary world, who have become loyal customers. “We are fortunate to have strong links with several Michelin-starred chefs. When our new oil is ready, we will give them an exclusive opportunity to taste it so they can get an idea of the year's flavours. Like wine, each 'vintage' has its characteristics, depending on the previous year's climate.” Jean-Noël and Véronique are the driving force behind the farm and have big ambitions for Champsoleil... Enough to put the little olive from Nice on the map far beyond the Côte d'Azur's borders.


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