Travelling along the roads in the mythical “Châteauneuf-du-Pape” vineyard means smelling, feeling, and of course tasting. A blend of modern and traditional between the deep blue sky, the rows of vines, famous bottles with the backdrop of the Dentelles de Montmirail and Mont Ventoux!
Camaret sur Aigues
Stage 1Châteauneuf-du-Pape to Avignon Thrills and an epicurean break
Our wine tour starts at Château Virant, a vast wine and olive-growing estate nestling on the hillside, among vineyards and olive groves. Its clay-limestone soil, dominated by a rocky barrier, enjoys a microclimate among the dryest in France. You can taste the fruits of the vines and the olive trees grown by the Cheylan family while you enjoy a family-style lunch before going on to Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Just under the remains of its fortress, between Avignon and Orange, the village looks over the Comtat plain and its 3,000 hectares of vineyards.
Head for Le Pavillon Bouachon for a barrel tasting, followed by a wine and macaroon pairing. After this first subtle appetizer, discover the elixirs of the Vallée du Rhône at the Ecole des Vins in Avignon. This first day ends with a gourmet meal at Le Carré du Palais, opposite the largest Gothic building of the Middle Ages. Behind the mythical ramparts of the town, your bedroom awaits you at l’Hôtel de Cambis.
Stage 2Camaret sur Aigue, Suzette and Gigondas Châteauneuf-du-Pape, a Provencal gem
The first excitement of the day admiring the panoramic view of the pretty medieval village, near the old château of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Wander into the middle of the village and get to know this pretty hamlet on a guided tour. The brand new Vinothèque and its collection of taste-vins has a tasting workshop. As for the wine-growing estate of Le Clos de l’Oratoire, it is one of the most mythical vintages of Châteauneuf-du-Pape: it is easy to recognize with its label which has stayed the same since 1926. Discover its vines near l’Étang Salé and its cellars before tucking into planchas of cheese and charcuterie at the estate’s resident meal table.
Just next door, the village of Suzette provides the famous Demoiselle Suzette for a tasting in the rows of vines. Using your five senses, explore the terroirs of Beaumes-de-Venise in a blind tasting or the aroma game. As an added bonus, the incredible views of the Dentelles de Montmirail. And to cap it all, dinner and a night in Hôtel Montmirail in Gigondas, in a pretty 19th-century house at the foot of the famous mountains.
Stage 3Barroux to Gargas Ready, steady, taste!
And why not continue your road trip in a classic Volkswagen camper van or a vintage Beetle in the vineyards of Le Domaine de la Tourade, in Gigondas. For six generations, this little family estate has been producing wines in the middle of the terroir of the Dentelles de Montmirail. Enjoy a tasting with the wine growers while you make the most of the superb view in the middle of the vines. Your day continues at Château du Barroux which houses a Ventoux small spelt-based whiskey distillery, a change from wine!
The emblematic Château Pesquié, at the foot of Mont-Ventoux, is still one of the major estates with the Ventoux designation. With its wine-growers picnic in front of the château or under the plane trees, you’ll feel really at home. Then you can walk through the vineyards and woods with a sophrologist, to get a better feeling for the landscapes and wines of Domaine Les Chancel. Artworks are dotted along your walk and of course the wine-tasting, particularly the white wines which have given the estate its reputation. As the sun goes down, it’s time to go to La Coquillade & Spa in Gargas to end the weekend on a well-being note. Perched on a hill, the resort guarantees a fantastic view from the luxurious rooms or romantic suites.