EXPERIENCE ALL FOUR SEASONS OF LA VERRIERE

The advantageous altitude presents four very pronounced seasons, very helpful to the health of the working vineyard. As each distinct change in weather occurs, the surrounding nature ebbs and flows, bringing with it distinctive patterns of activity in plant, animal and human life. If relaxation is not your only objective when visiting, there’s always plenty to learn. [Bénédicte, one of your hosts, is always available to share the new and intriguing things happening in the vineyard throughout the year.]

photographer Laurent Pamato

photographer Laurent Pamato

LIFE BEGINS IN SPRING

As the climate begins to warm, everything in this UNESCO biosphere reserve - one of the few in France - comes back to life. Spring often starts late in April because of the altitude, and this is often the most enjoyable season for Nature lovers, as the landscape suddenly bursts alive with color, activity and the delicate perfume of numerous flowers. The gardens, sanctioned by the official PACA (Provence-Alps-Cote d’Azur) Parcs et Jardins society, suddenly overwhelm as the roses bloom in sequence. Clouds of the biosphere’s 1200 species of butterflies hover over budding plants, to a soundtrack of buzzing, humming and chirping.  Bright green leaves adorns the old vines, while trails of poppies and other wildflowers carpet the rows. An ideal season to hike, cycle or visit cultural sites.

April

  • Easter Antique Fair, Isle-sur-la-Sorgue

  • Easter Pottery Fair, Bonnieux

  • Golf Celebrity Charity Event, Avignon

  • Rare Plant Fair, Sérignan

  • Féria Bull Fighting Competition, Arles

At La Verrière: this is when excess grape buds are trimmed to concentrate quality. This process is known as ebourgeonage.

May 

  • Dessert Festival, Aix

  • Wine & Vine Fest, Visan

  • Flower Fair, Richerenches

  • Ladiesʼ Wine & Art Fest, Visan

At La Verrière: now is the time for the honey harvest.

photographer Laurent Pamato

photographer Laurent Pamato

SUMMER: THE SEASON OF RELAXATION

Summer is the perfect time for pure hedonistic relaxation. From late June to early September the famous Provençal sunshine provides a comforting backdrop for lazy sunbathing and recreation by the pool, though a cool breeze from the altitude typically punctuates the heat; a characteristic scent of lavender encourages impromptu snoozing. Dark green leaves in the vineyard conceal the baby grapes as they begin to flourish. Explore the local countryside, by car, bicycle or on foot. There are plenty of things to do outdoors or escape to the local sites, markets and festivals. 

June

  • Art Festival, Avignon - famous for its theatre, including some performances in foreign languages

  • Jazz Festival, Orange - free concerts near the town hall

  • Choregies dʼOrange - a famous summer opera festival during which the giant amphitheatre is used as the stage from across the world.

At La Verrière: the time of the relevage; the lifting the vine wires to support the branches.

July

  • International Photography Festival, Arles

  • Theatre Festival, Avignon

  • Contemporary Dance Festival, Vaison-la-Romaine - artists perform at the amphitheatre and occasionally at La Verrière

  • Lyrical Music Festival, Orange

  • Opera Festival, Aix

  • Tour de France bicycle race up Mt. Ventoux

  • Pottery Fair, Séguret

At La Verrière: the beautiful smells will indicate that the lavender is ready to harvest.

August

  • Chamber Music Festival, Suzette

  • Piano Music, La Roque DʼAnthéron

  • Medieval Veraison festival, Châteauneuf-du-Pape - Medieval stalls and wonderful wines.

  • Choralies Choir Festival, Vaison-La-Romaine (every 3 years)

  • Annual Ruggieri Fireworks display in Monteux

La Verriere Grapes

AUTUMN IS A TIME FOR HARVEST

As the weather cools, the beautiful Indian summer lasts until the end of October. A sea of red vine leaves offers a stunning contrast to the surrounding landscape. The vineyard is at its liveliest in late Autumn as grapes are hand-harvested and vinification of our Chêne Bleu wine begins. With fewer tourists in the area, it’s the perfect season to witness local authentic Provence culture or learn about winemaking.  Walk from site to site amongst the vines and test the different developing grape flavors. Ask to eat with the harvest team and witness the fervent hive of activities. We host special educational programs for hands-on participation, by request?

October

  • Soup Festival, Crestet

  • Journées Gourmandes Gastronomic Fest, Vaison-la-Romaine

At La Verrière: the moment that everyone has been waiting for, the Vendanges, the wine harvest!

November

  • All-Saints Antique Fair, Isle-sur-la-Sorgue

  • La Bacchanale Running Race, Vaison-la-Romaine

At La Verrière: the olive have ripened and are waiting to be harvested.

La Verriere Le Chene Bleu in snow

GET COSY IN WINTER

The winters at La Verriere are very pronounced because we are so high up. The famous Mistral wind blows up from southern France, and a blanket of snow covers the vineyard. The frost helps to naturally clear away many pests, resetting the cycles of life for the following season.
                                            
The priory is closed except by special arrangement, and although this is a relatively quiet time for visitors, the Tasting Room is open all year round and wine enthusiasts continue to partake in the wine experiences.
                        
There is also a winter ski lift on Mont Ventoux nearby. Although the ski runs are short, this is still a fun day out. For more adventurous skiing, the world-class resorts of Serre Chevalier, Les Orres, Orcieres-Merlette, SuperDevoluy, Risoul, Montgenevre, Gresse en Vercors, Chamrousse and L'Alpe d'Huez are within a 3 to 4 hour-drive from Crestet, depending on traffic.

December

  • Special Christmas Market, Avignon

  • The 13 Desserts of Christmas, Châteauneuf-de-Gadagne

At La Verrière: a busy period of the year when the vines are pruned and shaped; the truffle hunting season begins; and the Medieval Feast of Christmas is hosted.

January

  • Winter Dance Festival, Avignon

  • Literary Walks, Lourmarin

  • Cheval Passion Horse Convention, Avignon

  • Truffle Mass, Richerenches

At La Verrière: this is the month in which the vines are pruned. Also, the traditional midnight feast and party, New Years Reveillon de la Saint Sylvestre, welcomes in the new year.

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