World Famous Wine & Cognac on our Doorstep
La Maison Grange is equidistant between Bordeaux and Cognac, making this the perfect gite choice to leisurely explore the world famous Cognac and wine regions that are right on our doorstep.
Whether you are with a group of friends or with the family there is something for all ages to enjoy.
The world's best-known brandy comes from the peaceful countryside surrounding the Charente River, 45 minutes from La Maison Grange. This slow moving river, which King François I called the loveliest river in his kingdom, passes through a placid landscape of vineyards bathed by a clear and radiant light. A twenty-mile area called the 'golden circle" of cognac production encompasses Cognac and the second distilling town ofJarnac.
Cognac, the medieval town which bears the name of the region, is attractive with its narrow medieval cobbled streets and elegant Renaissance facades. It is here that the fabled nectar has been created since the 17" century and that the very air one breathes is permeated by the heavy scent of spirits evaporating from oak casks held in storage: this aroma is referred to as the "angels's share'. World famous firms such as Camus, Hennessy, Niartell, Otard, Prince Hubert de Polignac, Rémy-Martin, Courvoisier and Renault-Bisquit are located here; each distillery has its own secret and unique process for mixing the various blends of its eaux-de-vie. Join a guided tour to learn about the double-distilling process that goes on in copper stills before the ageing in oak barrels where the precious liquor will improve, taking on its final bouquet and famous golden glow.
Take a barge or a small train and discover the history of cognac, its vineyards, distilleries and museums which show you not only how it is made but proudly display the oldest reserve of cognacs dating back to 1830. Then how about a taste!
Unlike other Bordeaux regions, Pomerol has no official wine ranking or classification. However, wines like Château Pétrus and Château Le Pin are priced as high as the classified first growths of the Pauillac and Saint-Émilion such as Château Latour and Château Cheval Blanc. Many chateaux welcome visitors, others request advance bookings, a few are closed to anyone other than wine professionals.
We have discovered a fabulous chateau in St Christophe des Bardes (10 minutes outside St Emilion town) called Chateau Des Laudes. Christian Gombaud welcomes all La Maison Grange guests for a personal tour of his chateau. The chateau boasts a very unique method of production and Christian takes great delight in explaining how Chateau Laudes produce such superb wines before you enjoy tasting a selection of them. We highly recommend Chateau Laudes for a real insight into how St Emilion wines have developed into world class status. Open Febuary through to the end of October (out of season by appointment) 10.30-12 noon then 2-6pm every day.
A good day in wine country would be to start by visiting one of the Pomerol chateaux, lunch in Saint Emilion followed by a visit to Chateau Laudes before returning to La Maison Grange.
Another day, although a longer drive, might be to travel through the city of Bordeaux to the west bank of the Gironde, where St-Estephe, Paulliac, St-Julien, Margaux and the Medoc appellations offer visits and tastings.