Dordogne vineyards – a complete wine guide
As one of the most beautiful regions of France, the Dordogne is a great destination for a wine tasting holiday.
It’s easy to reach with all-year-round flights from London and Paris. It’s also only an hour away from Bergerac Airport, so you can fly there and then rent a car, or take a bus or train to all the vineyards in the area.
There are many reasons why people love travelling to this region, but it has been claimed that “no one who has tasted its wines has ever regretted it”. You will find vineyards in any part of this region but be sure to visit some including Lencouacq Cellars and Chateau du Cros.
The region has a diverse range of grapes due to its mix of terroirs and climates, so there is a wine for everyone’s taste. Let’s explore it!
Dordogne Wine Type
Most vineyards are found in the Perigord, or right bank of the river Dordogne and also the Bergerac region which is a small subregion producing red wines from the Merlot grape variety and from Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc grapes.
The Dordogne region is famous for its wines. It has two French regions that produce it: the southwest and a tiny area of Lot. Wine has been cultivated there for centuries despite being overshadowed by Bordeaux. Périgord vineyards cover the hills of the Aquitaine coast, including Garonne and Dordogne. The region is famous for its beautiful countryside, which features a variety of rich vegetation and tranquil French villages. The majority of vineyards in Dordogne are situated around Bergerac and Domme, both on the banks of the river.
Westerly winds are common here in this region, meaning that the area is particularly well-suited for growing grapes. Many vineyards can be found on these exposed hillsides where these winds offer much-needed drying and cooling.The climate in Dordogne is continental, while the Bordeaux area is more suited to producing wine. They have different summer and winter temperatures due to the influence of the Atlantic Ocean near Biarritz.
Bergerac is a wine appellation in South-West France close to the Dordogne river. The wines are similar to those of Bordeaux and production is usually from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Sauvignon. The wines of Bergerac have a long history in the region. Their popularity is dwarfed only by their neighbour Bordeaux, who tends to produce more hearty and age-worthy wine. Today, many of their wines are just as easy to drink but are less bold than those found in neighbouring french vineyards.
The vineyards in the area are mainly found on either side of the river valley in the southern half of Dordogne department, with most of them centred around the small city of Bergerac. There are a few AOC appellations to be found in this area as well.
Monbazillac is the most famous wine in this region and is entirely made from sweet white grapes. But there are also Côtes de Bergerac and Pecharmant for red and white wines.
My vineyards list in Dordogne
As one of the most famous wine-growing regions in France, The Dordogne experience includes visiting a winery. Visit some of the chateau from my list and enjoy your wine testing.
A beautiful vineyard that produces award winning wines for over a decade.
Humphrey Temperley, owner of Château Lestevenie wine estate, talks of the importance of following biodynamic practices in order to keep wines’ organoleptic characteristics intact. They cultivate our vine plots with minimal intervention to let wildlife flourish.
With regards to nature, the estate grows of grapes organically. These include Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc and also Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadelle.
2. Chateau du Cros
For 4 generations, the Boyer family has protected the neighbouring territory. It consists of the 18th century chartreuse, which is located on top of a limestone rock peak and vineyards on the limestone plateau (highest point of view on the river). The Château du Cros estate is located 40km south of Bordeaux. Their vines produce the Loupiac and Bordeaux red and white wine appellations.
3. Château de Monbazillac – my favourite from Dordogne vineyards list
Monbazillac Castle presents you with a mix of mediaeval defending and Renaissance elegance. Designed to be a wine-tourist’s haven, they offer exclusive tours and tastings. From a modern pavilion surrounded by rows of vines to the vaulted cellars, it provides an excellent setting for enjoying a cold glass of Monbazillac.
Monbazillac is a wine that the French have largely kept to themselves, exporting only 20% of it while mostly shipping it to Belgium and the Netherlands where they consume more than half of it. In America, less than 5% of Monbazillac has been sold. Monbazillac is France’s largest late-harvest wine region in terms of the number of vineyards and volume of wine produced.
Chateau Monbazillac is probably the most famous chateau in the region of Dordogne.
4. Château du Haut-Pezaud
This wine producing estate operates in my small vineyard, where they make a wide range of wines like Monbazillac, red and rosé wines.
Meeting people and sharing knowledge is the most fulfilling aspect of the owners, they love organising eminently memorable events all year round, they will let you discover so much more of the world.
4. Château de Fayolle
With 36 acres of vines of both red and white grapes in production, Château de Fayolle has a legacy of producing quality wine with a modern twist. For the past few centuries, the wines of Bergerac, Saussignac and Périgord have been served at tables across Europe. The ambition of château’s new owners Frank and Riki Campbell is to provide high-quality wine in order to promote the region.
5. Château Pécharmant Corbiac
With a long history of wine-making and grape cultivation in the region, it is said that Adrien Durand de Corbiac at Pécharmant was among the first to reconstruct American vines from choice grapes after devastating fires.
This is the third most popular wine from Pecharmant and it is also getting more popular.
6. Château Montdoyen
Originally from Normandy in Northern France, Jean-Paul and Brigitte found this a vineyard. They had intended to tear down the property and start over fresh.
Their diverse soil, terroir and grape varietals allow us to offer wine varieties from six different appellations. Within each appellation, they have three wines that you can choose from – White Bergerac, Sweet Bergerac, Monbazillac.
7. Domaine de Perreau
The Domaine de Perreau is located on the clay-limestone plateaus of Montravel, situated west of Bergerac.
There are 900 winegrowers in the Bergerac appellation, which is one of 10 different appellations in the region. The vineyards in the area come with a delicious range of wines: from light white to deep black, from crisp and dry to grand cru.
La Pierre et l’Eau a tribute to this land, to the magnificent terrier of Montravel. Minerality from the rocks and freshness from their water are the perfect combination that creates their unique wine. We’ve sought to make the best of this exceptional terroir, recognized as one of a thousand. Our wine reflects the balance between richness and freshness that marks this elevated vineyard.
8. Chateau Belingard
The chateau’s long history is reflected in its name, derived from the Celtic name ‘belen garten’ – the garden of Beleen– the god of sun and war. Walking down a path to an ancient rock carved into the shape of a druid will take you on a journey through Celtic history.
Pick up a bottle from Château Bélingard’s Red and White Fine Wines from the Bergerac and Monbazillac AOCs. They’re packed full of flavour and offer a range of colours as well. Their constant attention to detail in vineyards and wineries helped us to produce a variety of red and white wines with a subtle balance. The chateau present them in three Collections: The Definitive Collection, The Vintners Collection and the Essential Collection.
9. Vignobles Dubard
The Dubard Family founded their first wine estate in 1970, in Montravel.. The family has also restored two more estates on the right bank of the Dordogne.
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