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A Chateau de Berne and Chateau Sainte-Béatrice Sextet

Chateau de Berne Les Oliviers Rouge 2013, Blanc 2016 and Rosé 2016
Cotes de Provence, Provence, France
Chateau Sainte-Béatrice Instant B Rouge 2015, Instant B Blanc 2016 and Instant B Rosé 2016
Cotes de Provence, Provence, France

I’m back in the sunny mid-winter climes of Monaco for the next week or so, the perfect prompt to organize and add a few notes on six wines I enjoyed over the course of a six-day working visit to the Principality last November — posted here mainly as a reminder that good decent value French wines don’t have to come with an exorbitant price tag. Increasingly, they’re not.

I stayed and worked in the Méridien Beach Plaza Hotel, whose restaurants’ house wines consisted of the handful listed below — at least that was the case in late November 2017. These are all from Cotes de Provence, the largest appellation in the Provence wine region of south-eastern France, an area –actually, a series of several vast noncontiguous tracts– mostly known for its production of Rosé. Nearly 90% of the wine produced in the Cotes de Provence appellation is dry Rosé made from Grenache, Cinsault and a local red Tibouren; not surprisingly, the two Rosés below were the pick of the bunch, although I consider them all good values. I’m not sure how far and wide these are available, but in case you cross paths with them, here you go. Onward.

Chateau de Berne Les Oliviers Rouge 2013, Cotes de Provence
Blend of Carignan, Grenache noir and Syrah, very fruity on the nose and palate, with black currant and blackberry predominant. Good balance with a persistent finish. Very food-friendly. 13%.
€9 retail / tasted Nov 2017

Chateau de Berne Les Oliviers Blanc 2016, Cotes de Provence
A blend of Sémillon and Ugni Blanc, it’s shiny pale yellow in color, floral on the nose with citrus and exotic fruit on the palate. Longish finish.
€8 retail / tasted Nov 2017

Chateau de Berne Les Oliviers Rosé 2016, Cotes de Provence
A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsault, and Grenache noir, a lovely old world-style Rosé for the price; subtle, soft and light with pleasant apricot notes, hints of strawberry and peach. Again, easy quaffing with a meal.
€9 retail / tasted Nov 2017

Chateau Sainte-Béatrice Instant B Rouge 2015, Cotes de Provence
A blend of Carignan, Grenache and Syrah, there’s a fair bit of complexity in this bottle given the accessible price point. Blackberry, cherry and some spice on the nose, the tannins are ripe but balanced. Worked wonders with rich lasagna. Buy a couple or three, and drink them over the next four years.
€10 retail / tasted Nov 2017

Chateau Sainte-Béatrice Instant B Blanc 2016, Cotes de Provence
A blend of Sémillon and Rolle; expressive nose with ripe peach and banana notes. Good now but the strong fruitiness might subside a bit over the next year.
€10 retail / tasted Nov 2017

Chateau Sainte-Béatrice Instant B Rosé 2016, Cotes de Provence
A blend of Cinsault, Grenache, and Syrah, it’s an attractive pale pink in color, with plenty of dried fruit on the nose; nutty and chalky, too. Full-bodied and nicely balanced, with concentrated red berry fruit notes. Delightful. 13%. (I recently saw this listed for $22 in a US publication.)
€10 retail / tasted Nov 2017

Chateau Sainte Beatrice
491 Chemin des Peiroux, 83510 Lorgues, France
sainte-beatrice.com

Prices are retail in France at the time of tasting. Find wines from Chateau Sainte-Béatrice and Chateau de Berne in your area via Wine-Searcher.

 

Chateau de Berne
Route de Salernes, Flayosc,83510 Lorgues, France
www.chateauberne.com/

Chateau de Berne Les Oliviers
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Chateau Sainte Beatrice
491 Chemin des Peiroux, 83510 Lorgues, France
sainte-beatrice.com

Chateau Sainte-Béatrice Instant B
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