From the Perigord with Love - The Williamsburg Winery

From the Perigord with Love

Chateau des Milandes, the erstwhile property of Josephine Baker in the heart of the Perigord.
Chateau des Milandes, the erstwhile property of Josephine Baker in the heart of the Perigord.

Early last year, Francoise and I were looking at homes in the Perigord, one of the iconic regions of France, just Northeast of Bordeaux. The Perigord is known for its pleasant climate, the beauty of the countryside and its castles, its extraordinary food including truffles and foie gras, and wonderful wines.

Is it a surprise that we love the Perigord?

Our friend Alain Castagnie and his wife introduced us to a beautiful property just a few km South of Bergerac, the home of Cyrano of the Three Musketeers’ fame. The Chateau la Borderie is an eighteenth century manor home built on foundations dated to medieval days. The owner, Mme Lisbeth Vidal showed us a portion of an old chain mail that was discovered during an archeological dig on her property.

The manor house at Chateau la Borderie.
The manor house at Chateau la Borderie.

The Chateau is surrounded by wide acres of vineyards and they produce a good appellation Bergerac sauvignon blanc and a classic Bordeaux style red. However,  the interesting nectar that we tried was their Monbazillac. I had remembered it from a trip taken with my family in the fifties. Sweet memory.

Monbazillac is a cousin of the Sauterne, the world famous, rich and unctuous wine designed to be enjoyed as an aperitif, to complement foie gras in its many varied recipes, or as a dessert. We decided to bring cases of Monbazillac to Williamsburg and share it with our visitors, guests and Club Members. Two companion wines will be featured: the first one “a vin moelleux” (a mellow wine);  and, the second the Monbazillac proper.  Both are made 100% from Semillon grapes, and the difference resides in how long the grapes are allowed to mature. Both are typically identified as “late harvest” that give them their richness.

Of course, even in a supposedly globalized world, things still take time. We had several most pleasant meetings with Mme Vidal, secured approval of the labels and special back labels from the federal government, and the wines were on their way to us by the end of the year. Next was the ABC registration approval.  We are finally delighted to offer samples of the two wines to those who will want to experience a taste of these lovely nectars of Aquitaine.

Enjoy life.

Patrick Duffeler
Founder & Chairman

The vineyards of Chateau la Borderie
The vineyards of Chateau la Borderie

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