Chateau La Coste is possibly one of the most celebrated wineries in Provence. Sprawled across 500 acres in the valley of Le Puy-Sainte-Réparade, it boasts of vineyards, work by world-famous artists, four first class kitchens (including restaurants by highly acclaimed chefs Francis Mallmann and Gérald Passédat), a boutique hotel, and amazing landscape.
Very “exclusive and chic”, this is an absolute heaven for those who adore little luxuries in life such as contemporary art, wine, R&R and fabulous food. I’m raring to return again, as on my last visit, it was such a sweltering day. My body temperature had only allowed me half a day until jumping in a pool of cold water trumped walking around the area more. Consider this as “Part 1”, perhaps?
Wine from Chateau La Coste is quite the pride of the French Riviera. Their key philosophies stem from protecting the fertility and the essence of the soil in which they grow the crop. Their wines are “AB” organic, and their biodynamic methods and their respect for the synergy of production and nature are widely recognized.
The wineshop showcases a range of red, white and rosé produced in the winery. There are also unique products such as olive oil variants, biscuits, tableware and glassware as well as books.
Lunch at La Terrasse
La Terrasse is Chateau La Coste’s outdoor café. It simply gives you a French country feel, and the food is super fresh and delightful.
It’s charming in a Provençal state of mind. And if you go there during Summer, they usually have live music throughout.
The menu is simple - they usually offer light favourites such as fresh salads, chilled soups, homemade tarts and fresh juices, teas and wine. I kid you not - this meal was possibly one of the best lunches I’ve had from 2017. The items sounded so simple, yet the flavours were so stunning and substantial.
I’ve had the best onion tart here, and the ham and melon salad was to die for! Also, the orange and carrot soup was a revelation that I yearn to recreate (or taste again). Very good food and perfect for the hot French weather.
If like me, you prefer dining al fresco on a nice Summer day, definitely go here for lunch instead of the Tadao Ando Art Centre restaurant. It just has a bit more of an organic feel to it!
Chai Tour and Tasting
Chateau La Coste’s winemaking chais are designed by French architect Jean Nouvel. Spherical in form, they pretty much resemble old school greenhouses and agri warehouses from southern France.
It was rather fascinating to see where the grapes are pressed, the wine matures, and bottles are labelled. Seventeen meters below ground, you’ll find a state-of-the-art chamber containing the vats that store wine before they are bottled. It is said that keeping them down there enables the production of quality wine based on the specifics of their biodynamic soil philosophy.
After having a tour of the place where they make wine, it was only right to sample the goods. We got to taste two types per colour, as well as a taste of their sparklies. Unsurprisingly - and possibly because we were in the South of France - my buds were swayed by the rosé. However, I have to admit that their reds were very silky and very, very delicious too (perhaps better to accompany food).
Art all over
Chateau La Coste is a haven for art. Even as you enter the estate, you’d notice a giant spider sculpture by Louise Bourgeois, waiting by an infinity pool and lurking you in.
The arts centre, pioneered by Japanese artist Tadao Ando, showcases light and space in nature. You would notice that quite a few of his art around the Chateau highlights geometric lines and symmetry as well as light and shade.
They also hold exclusive exhibitions by artists. Coming from the UK, I was quite pleased to see Tracy Emin showcasing her “Surrounded By You” exhibition. Admittedly, Miss Emin’s work is a bit of a hit and miss for me. Whilst I question some of her choices, I find some of her work rather emotive and provocative.
Art at the Chateau is world class and if you’re an afficionado you MUST go. Samples include Frank Gehry’s Music Pavillion, Alexander Calder’s Small Crinkly, Andy Goldsworthy’s Oak Room, Louise Benech’s Kitchen Garden, Paul Matisse’s Kitchen Bell and then some. It is recommended to allow two hours to complete the art walk, through hilltops and valleys. Admittedly, I found it too hot so I wasn’t able to view all.
But I shall return to take selfies (I realised I didn’t take photos with me in it, lol!) and of course, sample the rest of what the place has to offer!
What else is there to do?
If you do get to Chateau La Coste, you can also (and I’m planning to tick this list when I visit next)
- Have a staycation at the newly opened boutique hotel Villa La Coste and treat yourself to a spa day. It’s absolutely LUSH!
- Have lunch at Gérald Passédat’s Restaurant Louison. Lunch is fairly cheap at €55 and dinner is a bargain at €75.
- Have dinner at Restaurant Francis Mallmann. If you happened to salivate during his Chef’s Table episode, then you’re gonna love this restaurant. The setting is mega, and the menu is incredible!
As I said, Chateau La Coste is a great place to celebrate art, wine and ways to fine dine. If you ever find yourself by the French Riviera, do take time to visit this gorgeous place. It’s roughly half an hour away from Aix-en-Provence and is definitely worth the drive.
Do you like vineyards? Where are your favourites?
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This looks utterly idyllic Honey! And the food looks full of flavour & freshness - proves that sometimes the best meals are the ones that use the simplest ingredients to perfection!
Absolutely agree with simplicity being key! I really want to go back and try the other restaurants!
(And can’t wait to see you!)
I’m not sure which I love the look of the most, the setting or the food. But this is somewhere I really would love to eat.
Aww, Vicky the setting was absolutely gorgeous!
It sounds amazing. Despite no longer drinking alcohol I’d like to visit if only for the food and art. The food you’ve displayed in your pictures looks amazing!
Agree! Even if you don’t drink there’s plenty of things to enjoy at the Chateau!
Oh wow this all looks amazing! I love the food on holiday, it’;s one of my favourite things about going away and trying local delicacies and restaurants!
Me too, I travel for food!
Sounds amazing. It looks like such a relaxing placeto visit and I’d definitely love to visit there.
I hope you get to visit!
This looks great place for weekend getaway in France! I love visiting winery with good food! Beautiful place!
Me too, Soonjoo! I absolutely adore tasting good food and visiting places like this where everything is farm to table!
Hmmm. I’m not sure I’m feeling that spider sculpture. Hahaha! I’ll have to avert my eyes with that one. Otherwise what a picturesque area. And the food sounds amazing. Drool.
Hahaha, the spider was quite a bit of a “Woah” factor, but hey, such is art! 🙂
i do not like vineyards, but the description and imagery given is excellent to a tee.
What a pretty place! The walls are fantastic and the food and wine looks great. Perfect relaxation!
Absolutely agree! It’s so serene and beautiful there, too!
Well this just looks heavenly! I loved vineyards in Provence.
I love vineyards too! I can’t wait to visit the Villa, it looks lush!
You had me at wine and lunch! I love this and it’s my ideal lunch date! I love discovering new artists too although some of these pieces aren’t my taste!
Hahaha, most of them aren’t mine either but hey, it’s still very cool to look at stuff to see how an artist’s mind works, no?
This looks amazing. i can just imagine myself sitting there relaxing over a long lunch 🙂
I can imagine myself sitting there again! Probably at the next table haha!
I really like the pictures especially those of vineyards, this place seems perfect for dining. Oh ya, the art at the Chateau is world class .
Thanks Puneet - the art was spectacular! I love installation art like this, although not quite sure about Miss Emin’s!
Oh gosh this sounds wonderful. I miss France so much and would love to be able to go back at some point this year. Your photos are gorgeous.
Thank you Ami! I hope you get to go and visit the Chateau!
Omg this place is stunning!! I’m actually heading this way early May so think I may have to give it a go!
Oooh, so excited for you! I hope you get to visit the chateau, hun - you guys will enjoy it! x
What a fabulous trip and that food looks amazing!
Thank you Anyonita - yes it was great!
The trip sounds fab. Love the photos.
What a great trip! Such a fun, food filled day. I am definitely jealous.
Fun, food, and sun for sure! x
Such a beautiful place to visit with so many intricacies about it. Thank you for sharing and I will definitely note this as a place to visit someday!
I hope you get to go! x
I’d love to visit there, and skip Paris all together next time. Your photos are beautiful, too.
Paris is always a good idea but the other cities in France are so beautiful!
What an extraordinary place to visit! So much history and skill and gorgeous wine! I’d love to visit there one day. 🙂
And the funny thing is that the main owners are actually Irish, not French!
This Chateau sounds amazing, I really want to visit next time I’m in Provence. Great looking food, interesting scenery and Chai, I love Rosé de Provence and it’s only 4 hours from my home in Haute Savoie!
Oooh, I’d love to visit your neck of the woods at some point!
The authentic look of this vineyard must really add to the experience, it all looks so beautifully French!
Sure does, Lucy. Plus the atmosphere itself is just fantastic. Everybody has smiles on their faces!
I would love to go wine tasting. The sculpture of the spider is a little creepy though
Hahahaha everyone feels the same about the spider! LOL!
Oh I would so love to go to a vineyard!! It looks gorgeous and such a lovely experience!! I also love wine, hah!
Teehee, i hope you get to visit this place then, Laura!
Wowww, pardon me while I pick up my jaw from the floor. This looks like nothing short of heaven to me. Gorgeous natural views, gorgeous meals, gorgeous architecture and art… What an amazing place to be!! I’m putting this one on my bucket list!
I really didn’t think of it much when I looked it up but being there and walking around the place was seriously fantastic!
Everything looks so idylic ❤ such a beautiful place to visit ! Also tje food looks super delicious and fresh
All that Rose is making me thirsty for rose!
Hahaha, me too!
You’re really making me want to get back to the French Riviera! La Coste looks really gorgeous and very much set to for the luxury indulgent visit. Love the look of the food in psychiatry which I imagine is perfect with their wines!
The food was absolutely gorgeous, Kavey! And I hope you get to visit again!
What a splendid day you’ve had, Honey! I must confess Bourgeois’ spider freaks me out every time I look at it! xx
AHAHAHAHAAHAH! That bloody spider! LOL! Hope you get to visit this side of the world again, Nano!
I have never been to a winery and these post are making me plan a visit. The photographs look amazing. the winery is so beautiful and the food looks awesome too. Thanks for sharing and hope you plan your next trip soon 🙂
Thanks Sarmistha! I definitely hope you can go - there’s poetry in the beauty of nature and man’s ways of making it even more pretty.
Wow, it looks AMAZING! I’m so jealous. I need to convince my husband to take a trip here soon lol 🙂 Lovely pictures!
Said husband MUST take you and your momtastic self!
‘Exclusive and chic’ sounds good to me! This really does look like such a wonderful experience, right down to the onion tart - yum! This is a beautiful guide 🙂
Gabrielle, I can actually imagine you traipsing through the vineyards with your magic outfits!
A perfect place to sit and relax with a glass of perfect wine. Ahhhh lovely
It’s absolutely wonderful with that crisp French provençal air!
OK, I have to say that spider sculpture is creepy! Some of the other “art” is … interesting. But the countryside, architecture, and food look amazing! I hadn’t given much thought about all that goes into wine-making, since I’m not much of a wine connoisseur myself, but the pictures showing the process are fascinating.
This is my dream - I love wine!! I’m doing a course in early February, might have to book a trip to put my new skills to use!! xx
Ooh this looks absolutely stunning and now I see what the South African vineyards were modeled on way back when - very similar!! I need to plan a visit to the French wine region a priority!
Nice post, thanks for writing a great post.