Winery Snippet | Chateau de Berne
Chateau de Berne, France, Provence
Château de Berne spans 1,250 acres of sumptuous countryside in the heart of Provence. Niched between garrigue and olive groves, its 290 acres of wine-producing plots are planted with Grenache, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsault, Carignan, Viognier, Merlot, Sémillon, Ugni Blanc and Rolle grape varieties.
Château des Bertrands is a 494-acre estate located at the heart of a Natura 2000 protected area and at the foot of the Maures hill chain.
Ludovic de Beauséjour joined the Vignobles de Berne family in 2009. The estate spans over 50 acres between the towns of Flayosc and Lorgues, in the Var region and is crowned with forests that shelter it from winds and frost. The vineyards comprising Les Vignobles de Berne are committed to nurturing their magnificent assets, combining natural beauty, Provencal lifestyle and wine growing.
Winemaking has been a way of life at Château de Berne since 1750. Today nearly 200 of the estate’s 1,480 sunny acres are devoted to vineyards. Every wine is a subtle mix of nature’s influence and the winemaker’s expertise, and at Château de Berne we have struck a perfect balance between the two, producing wines that earn world acclaim.
History – Key Moments
Château de Berne is set on the Via Aurelia Roman Road that formerly linked Italy and Spain. Wine was already transported along the road at the time, so the roots of our vines actually go back as far as those of our ancestors! The grapes were ripened by the generous sunshine of Provence and packed with a luscious juice much appreciated by the Romans.
Raymond V, the Count of Toulouse, donated the estate to Saint Bernard, the founder of the Cistercian Order. The monks took up home here and set about nurturing this rich soil. Château de Berne’s name is derived from Saint Bernard and the Bérnardins Cistercian monks.
The estate underwent a facelift in the mid-18th century, when the Estellon family rebuilt its living quarters, planted new plots and, above all, decided to breathe life back into the Château by turning it into a hub of hospitality and festivities, combined with a restful retreat.
The estate was restored in 1960 by a Parisian publicist by the name of Madame Smeets. Thanks to her faultless taste, the Château’s resurrection was a genuine little miracle. In 1985, Berne was bought up by the British-born Bill Muddyman, who replanted 79 acres of vines, modernized the wine-making facilities and rebuilt the cellars. In 1995, he appointed Didier Fritz to direct the estate and develop a new hotel concept revolving around wine tourism.
A British businessman and wine aficionado purchased Château de Berne in 2007, along with the Château des Bertrands and Ludovic de Beauséjour vineyards, to form Les Vignobles de Berne. The three vineyards total over 250 acres of vines. In the same year, Château de Berne continued to innovate by launching its stylish and very popular signature square wine bottle – the first of its kind.
Measuring 292 acres, the Château de Berne terroir is situated on the Triassic Plateau, resting on a chalky bed dating back to the lower and middle Jurassic ages. The vineyard is sheltered by 1,240 acres of forests and is mainly South-facing. The cool evenings of the Haut Var (northern part of the Var) ensure slow and optimal grape ripening. Our Rosé wines mature slowly and are well structured, marrying particularly well with contemporary cuisine.
Each wine is a subtle blend of nature’s magic and the expert hand of man… The Château’s Côtes de Provence wines are named “Château de Berne” and “Terres de Berne” and are the very emblem of Provence. A genuine Château signature, our square bottles symbolize the estate’s deep attachment to tradition, combining quality and elegance while maintaining the spirit of our ancient wine growers.
As everyone knows, Provence is the birthplace of rosé wines and this colour is particularly honoured at the Vignobles de Berne vineyards. The Chateau de berne rosés are fruity, with a pretty salmon-pink robe, but each has their own very special personality.