CHATEAU LA CANORGUE
A winery in Paradise
The Ctes du Luberon
Chteau La Canorgue is located in the southern Rhne Valley, the
appellation being the Ctes de Luberon. Wines from this area had always
been a bit simple and weak, most likely the result of over-cropping the vines.
Today a new breed of vigneron inhabits this precious land (real estate there is
very costly). Smaller yields and serious winemaking account for a major
increase in quality.
Chteau La Canorgue is owned by Jean-Pierre Margan. The estate comprises
some 40 hectares and also is the source of a spring which runs all year
long. Margan jokes that he could make more money bottling the water than
he does in making wine.
We were told that the Rockefellers offered Margan a blank check for the estate,
an offer he graciously refused!
Vineyards are meticulously cared for and Margan farms the vines organically.
The cellars are immaculate.
We tasted many tank samples, having a look at all the pieces of the puzzle
Margan assembles in making his wine.
Nobody knows the wine better than the winemaker.
We saw some wood in the cellar, but Margan's wines are not lavishly oaked.
The fruit is really highlighted in the wines.
The winery is functional and efficient.
You may have read elsewhere on our site of the story of Margan and his playful
ruse. Knowing his wines are envied by many of his neighbors, he told
someone he knew that would spread the word that he had "Cabernet in his
vineyard." The grape, Cabernet Sauvignon, is not one which is
permitted in the wines labeled "Ctes du Luberon." The
authorities were informed and paid Monsieur Margan a visit, ready to cite this
supposed scofflaw for his flagrant violation of the Appellation Contrle laws.
When they asked about "Cabernet in the vineyard," Margan whistled and
yelled out "Cabernet!"
You see, the Cabernet in the vineyard was Margan's dog, named Cabernet.
We asked Jean-Pierre which of the dogs we saw was Cabernet.
"Oh, Cabernet died," he told us. "Now I have Merlot!"
After our "work" was done in seeing the cellars and vineyards, we
adjourned to the Margan's backyard patio for a bit of lunch under the warm Provenal
Mrs. Margan had assembled quite a feast for our little entourage!
We are not bothered if you don't have an appreciation for a bone dry Ros wine!
More for us!!!
Mrs. Margan sets a wonderful table!
Jean-Pierre knew just when to open some bottles!
We were hungry and thirsty!
Yes, that is the infamous Randy Kemner looking so serious at the head of the
The sun, even in March, can be quite warm! Hats are a good idea!!
The local cheese shop and charcuterie must have been delighted with our visit!
I imagine the baker was as delighted as were we.
If you know the story of the tortoise and the hare, you'll know to move fast in
trying and buying the wines of la Canorgue.
These are quite popular here in the Bay Area and tend to disappear quickly.
If you ever visit, you'll want to keep your eyes open for the signs pointing
towards good wine.
When you live on a wine estate, you, undoubtedly grow tired of
visitors who only want to have a tour and taste your wines (and then leave
without buying some bottles).
Keep in mind, should you visit small wine farms in Europe, to always have the
courtesy to buy a few bottles. You can either drag them back home or give
them to friends you meet during your travels.
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