Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Domaine de Valdition, Historic Winery in the Alpilles

I remembered reading a blogger's post about Domaine de Valdition's rosé wine as we came across a sign along the road announcing the entrance to the winery just ahead. That day we were headed to lunch down the road at Sous les Micocouliers in nearby Eygalières.

As you travel down the road, you can see the village of Eygalières ahead, perched on a small hill with chateau ruins at the top. As you get closer, you can see the small houses which line the winding streets of the village.

Domaine de Valdition is located down the road from Eygalières and not far from Saint-Rémy de Provence in the heart of the Alpilles. As we drive around, we see vast olive groves, vineyards, pine and oak forests and flocks of sheep grazing in fields.

Between Eygalières and Domaine de Valdition sits the Romanesque Saint-Sixte chapel, which has been listed as an historic monument by the French government since 1971. The chapel dates back to the 12th century and stands, isolated, on top of a rocky mount. The chapel is supported by massive buttresses and topped by a bell-tower wall.

The chapel is dedicated to the martyred Pope Saint Sixte who was believed to have died in the 3rd century. A procession is organised each year on the Tuesday following Easter, during which Guardians from Camargue, riding white horses, and men and women dressed in Arles-style costumes carry an effigy of the Pope to the Saint Sixte chapel.

If you have been following Our House in Provence blog for a while and especially the posts about food and wine, you have probably figured out that we love rosé wines. The aforementioned blogger, and for the life of me, I can't recall who, wrote that Domaine de Valdition makes her favorite rosé wine. Since we were early for lunch, we decided to turn in and taste the Domaine's wines for ourselves.

During the Renaissance, François 1st, King of France gave the Domaine as a gift to his daughter Caroline du Prévot who married Sieur Dacla de Chateaubert and their family and heirs keep the estate going for the next five centuries.

The Domaine is planted with vineyards and olive groves are surrounded by pastures and pine and oak forests. The Domaine de Valdition vineyards are planted with a lot of different cépages - grape varieties.

The varieties include Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsault, Grenache Noir, Marselan, Mourvèdre, Petit Verdot and Syrah for red wines, and Bourboulenc, Chasan, Grenache Blanc, Macabeu, Muscat Petit Grain, Roussane and Viognier for white wines.

There are 74 acres of olives groves planted with different varieties of trees for AOC Les Baux de Provence olive oil including Aglandau, Salonenque, Grossane and Verdale from the Bouches du Rhône. An olive called Bouteillan which came originally from the Var is planted on the Domaine too.

Shirley and friend John wait to enter the tasting room with me.

We taste through the various wines produced by the Domaine. They are are classified as Vin de Pays de Alpilles or A.O.C.Coteaux d’Aix en Provence.

We leave with a box of 2011 Vallon des Anges Rosé from the Coteaux d’Aix en Provence. The wine is pale in color and made of a blend of Grenache and Cinsault grapes.

We also buy bottles of AOC Les Baux de Provence olive oil and several ceramic pintades - guinea hens to add to our collection in the kitchen.

Thanks to the unknown blogger who wrote about Domaine de Valdition. We really liked the rosé wine and the delicious olive oil. I wish I could give credit to the proper author. If any of you are the ones who wrote, please remind me so I can correct this oversight.

Bonne journée mes amis et à bientôt. Have a great day, chat soon!

Domaine de Valdition
Route d'Eygalières
13660 Orgon
Tel: 04 90 73 08 12


  1. Eygalières looks a pretty little village.
    I used to dislike Rosé wine as I always thought it was a bit sweet. I am not sure if the rosé has changed, or my palate, but I am growing to enjoy it once more.
    Bonne journée. Diane

  2. Michel we talked about your blog over lunch today with some very nice clients who came cooking at Cuisine de Provence. Guess what? They planned a big part of their trip by faithfully reading your blog and visiting restaurants and sights you wrote about!

  3. Hello Michel, whilst reading your post and looking at the photos, I realised I have visited this Domaine, I remember sampling the olive oil, it was divine.

  4. Once again…beautiful photos!
    I must make sure and try the olive oil.
    I have tried the rosé, but my absolute favorite are the Rosés from Navarre, the Northern Spanish part of the Basque Country. They are not well known and therefore VERY inexpensive, but the taste is heaven. We have had several…Irache comes to mind:).

  5. Hi Michel, I came upon your blog through Deedee and am delighted to read this wine post. My sentiment on rosé matches that of Diane, so it should be nice to seek out some of the places that you've visited and try some for ourselves.

  6. Domaine de Valdition looks amazing Michel, can't wait to go! As you can imagine, we are big fans of
    rose wine as well :) Plus the surrounding area looks breathtaking - love your "photos from the road".

  7. Diane - To me there is nothing more enjoyable than a lovely dry crisp chilled glass of rose during the summer. A well made rose should be bone dry with no sugar left.

    Barbara - Thanks so much for sharing that with me. As you know, it is always nice to get feedback about our various endeavors. I hope all is well with you.

    Dash - Thanks so much for checking out my blog and leaving a comment. We bought quite a few bottles of the olive oil and took then home to California.

    Labergerbasque - Thanks for the nice feedback. I love rose but I am not familiar with the rosess of the Navarre region. Sounds like that is an oversight I need to fix.

    Rowena - Thanks so much for stopping in to visit my blog and for leaving a comment. Give roses a chance, they are so refreshing and they are great with food during the summer.

    Tuula - Domaine Valdition is a beautiful domaine which makes great rose wine and olive oil. As you say, the area is gorgeous and there so many villages in the area to see. Definitely worth the detour as Michelin would say.

  8. Yippey! A new place to put on my list to visit. I've never heard of it so that makes it even more exciting :)

  9. Ashley - The Alpilles region is a very nice and different part of Provence. Quite a few very charming villages, great olive oil, and Les Baux de Provence.