Spring in Provence can’t be beat. Visit Chateau Lacoste in the South of France to enjoy great art, wine, and hospitality.

While California is flooded with winter rains, I dream about spring and specifically, spring in Provence. The Mediterranean Sea air, the lavender fields, and the purple color of the lavenders are what I am most looking forward to. I dream of visiting Chateau la Coste, a place where art, nature, and wine are all found.

Chateau La Coste lies north of Aix-en-Provence. Patrick McKillen, an Irish property developer, purchased the property in 2002. The land dates back to 1682. In twenty years, McKillen has transformed Chateau Lacoste into a biodynamic winery, a luxury resort, and a destination for art, nature, and food.

Nature in Provence

Chateau La Coste covers 494 acres. Lavender fields, olive groves, 15 hives to produce honey, and 320 acres of grapevines are all part of the estate. A vegetable garden is included. The 200 ewes will graze the land until spring. Horses are used to graze the older vines on steeper slopes, as they are more precise and lighter than a tractor. The property was certified as organic in 2009 and will begin biodynamic conversion by 2021.

Villa La Coste. Photo by Richard Haughton

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Chateau La Coste, set in a stunning landscape, is committed to protecting the natural environment. They want to use the fertile soil, but also leave their mark. In leaving their mark they also want to respect the environmental. The conservation of nature is woven into all aspects of business, from production and hospitality to marketing.

Villa La Coste: Hospitality and hospitality

Villa La Coste is a luxury five-star hotel with a “palace rating”. The hotel has 28 villas, each with its own patio and terrace. They offer a panoramic view over the Luberon Valley and La Coste Vineyard.

Villa La Coste has 28 villas. Photo by Richard Haughton

The estate has five restaurants, including the Michelin-starred Helene Darroze, the Argentinian Francis Mallmann and the Italian Vanina. There is also the casual La Terrasse as well as the cafe Tadao Ando.

Francis Mallmann in Chateau La Coste. Photo by Richard Haughton

Many restaurants use vegetables grown in the garden of the estate.

La Terrasse, Chateau La Coste. Photo by Richard Haughton

Art at Chateau La Coste

The Art Trail is a series of installations created by invited artists and architects. Also, there are works by Frank Gehry, Ai Weiwei, and Alexander Calder. Bob Dylan’s permanent sculpture is located on the Chateau la Coste outdoor art estate. The public is welcome to this unique art exhibit.

Louise Bourgeois, Crouching spider. Photo by Richard Haughton

Wine at Chateau La Coste

The vines on the 320 acres are planted in an amphitheater shape. The first vines were planted on the land more than 80 year ago. Before McKillen bought the property, grapes were used to make bulk wine. McKillen’s team increased the quality and reduced the quantity. Chateau La Coste produces red and rose wine from grenache, cabernet sauvignon, syrah and cinsault and white wine from vermentino and sauvignon blanc. The traditional Provencal grapes counoise, mourvedre and vermentino were recently planted.

Vineyards at Chateau la Coste. Photo courtesy Vincent Agnes

Fabulous Rose Wines

Chateau La Coste produces a variety of rose wines.

La Bulle de La Coste 2021 sparkling wine is made using syrah, grenache and the traditional method. This wine tastes like sunshine. The Rose d’Une Nuit is a blend made from vines that are 15 to 20 years old. The wine is made in stainless steel and has a lovely nose of red fruit, flowers, minerals, and lovely freshness.

Chateau La Coste Vin de Provence blends cabernet, grenache syrah and cinsault from old vines on the hills. The wine is aged for three months and has melon, citrus and lemon pith notes, as well as crisp acidity and minerality.

Chateau Lacoste Grand Vin rose 2021 is a blend aged for six months in oak of syrah grenache and vermentino. On the nose are notes of white fruits and citrus, with a beautiful minerality at the finish.

Rose Wines From Chateau La Coste Photo by Allison Levine

Virtual Escape to Provence for Spring

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