For just five nights each summer Chateau L’Hospitalet, a serene retreat nestled in the Languedoc region of the South of France, undergoes a spectacular transformation as the picturesque locale becomes center stage for Gerard Bertrand’s annual Jazz Festival known as Jazz L’Hospitalet.
The charming estate is a destination in itself and offers a bit of something for everyone. Consisting of a winery, restaurant, hotel, tasting room and art gallery, it truly comes to life as 1,400 guests descend on the property to savor a moment of the Arte de Vivre as wines, gastronomy, music and culture so harmoniously intersect in the South of France – in a uniquely intimate environment to enjoy the talents of your favorite musicians.
The surrounding environs similarly do not disappoint, with endless views of gently rolling vineyards punctuated by magnificent sculptures and gentle sea breezes make this truly memorable experience not to be missed.
During my visit, I had the opportunity to enjoy performances up close and personal as Melody Gardot positively serenaded us, while the next night Craig David managed to even get me up and dancing. Also performing during the festival were the likes of Ben L’Oncle, Zazie and Lisa Simone.
Chateau L’Hospitalet is owned by Languedoc leader and visionary Gerard Bertrand, who also owns 14 other wine producing estates within the Languedoc-Roussillon region.
His tireless efforts and commitment to biodynamic viticulture have been pivotal in elevating the status and recognition of the wines of this region that has historically been overshadowed by its more famous French counterparts.
Just this year, Gerard’s Chateau L’Hospitalet La Clape Grand Vin 2017 managed to outclass over 10,000 wines tasted blind at the prestigious annual International Wine Challenge in London, a profound honor which clearly demonstrates the potential of Languedoc terroir and biodynamic viticulture.
Even more impressive, the now World Champion Red Wine retails for a refreshingly accessible ~$35 in the United States. A blend of Syrah, Grenache and Mourvedre grown in limestone soils, it’s produced from a selection of the finest barrels of each variety each year.
My tastings notes describe it as dense, dark and voluptuous boasting a wave of silky dark fruit accented by hints of olive tapenade, licorice and dusty cocoa.
Hedonistic and utterly delicious, it paired exceptionally well with a taste of the Arte de Vivre. My recommendation? Visit and experience not only great food and soothing jazz under the summer sky, but also Gerard Bertrand’s winemaking philosophy of producing wines “with the taste of somewhere, rather than the taste of something.”