When it comes to wine, the passion runs deep.
By Samantha Myers
New figures indicate that British and American buyers lead the search when it comes to purchasing vineyards, specifically in France. “Demand for vineyards has never dropped — quite the opposite,” says Annick Dauchy, property business development manager for FrenchEntrée, an online purchasing buying guide for French properties.
“Much of the time, the decision on which area to buy in is led by budget,” says Dauchy. “The quantity of vineyards available in France means that buyers have plenty of choice — there’s a property to suit each buyer’s individual circumstances.”
Vineyards on the market include a range for every buyer from advanced to beginner ready to get a taste of the lifestyle — from a €13 million, 19th-century chateau in Montpellier in the Languedoc-Roussillon region, to a €400,000, seven-bedroom home with a modest plot of vines.
Photos courtesy of FrenchEntrée
Photo courtesy of Patrick Alexander
Famed French chocolatier and culinary wizard, Patrick Roger, has launched his first exclusive wine, “L’Instant de Patrick Roger (2016).” Produced in Trouillas, in the eastern Pyrénées, the wine was harvested alongside four varieties of almonds on a vineyard that has been planted for 20 years. Saved from destruction after purchasing the estate in 2011, today, the vineyard is a stunning plot of land.
From vinification to bottling, every step of production of the wine was done by hand out of respect for the land, due to Roger’s priority in protecting the environment. “We have to save the earth if we want to survive on it,” he says. “We must fall in love with nature, with trees and wines, in order to make the rain come.” L’Instant de Patrick Roger is €69 per bottle or €282 for 6 bottles. www.PatrickRoger.com
Under the careful supervision of his father, Patrick Alexander began drinking wine with his meals at the age of five. “Although mixed with water, it was unmistakably wine and we would discuss the taste and bouquet while my father would explain where and how it was made,” says Alexander. “At the same age, with the warm encouragement of my mother, I began a lifelong love affair with books.”
Surrounded by vineyards from his early 20s on, from Bordeaux, to Piedmont to Santa Cruz, Alexander finally settled in Miami — a location with no vineyards at all. After teaching a wine appreciation course in a bookstore for more than a decade, Alexander said creating a book about wine and books was a natural flow. “Living in a region with no wine — I decided to write about it instead!”
The Booklovers’ Guide to Wine aims to teach an all-encompassing background to wine — what it is, where it’s grown and how it’s made. “Throughout the book, I have quoted extensively from poets, novelists and statesmen as they refer to wine from so many different perspectives,” he says. In a particular chapter, Alexander pairs different wine grapes with different writers; Dickens with Cabernet Sauvignon, Jane Austen with Chardonnay and JRR Tolkien with Albarino.