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Château Malartic-Lagravière boosts offer ahead of the Olympics

Château Malartic-Lagravière has enriched its wine tourism offer as all eyes turn to France for the Paris Olympics at the end of this month.

CHÂTEAU MALARTIC-LAGRAVIÈRE, the Classified Growth of Graves in the Pessac-Léognan appellation, is gearing up for a bumper summer.

Fresh from winning the on-premise dining category at the Best of Wine Tourism 2024 for its gastronomic ‘Lunches at the Château’ series, the team has launched a new menu to celebrate the 2024 Olympic Games, which is coming to France this summer.

The Olympics, which is taking place in Paris but will visit Bordeaux for the football tournament, provides an opportunity to highlight the region’s international reputation as it welcomes a global audience.

Marketing director Séverine Bonnie explains that the team were hugely proud to receive the Best of Wine Tourism 2024 award, and developed the more relaxed, international-style menu to complement its existing gastronomy.

“It is great to be a part of such a global network,” Bonnie says. “And we like to bring some freshness and modernity to our hospitality.”

The estate’s chef will be offering a ‘5 Continents gourmet treat’ – a locally sourced tapas menus of seasonal specialities from five continents, which can be enjoyed alongside two of the château’s grands crus and a wine from Bodega DiamAndes, the 130-hectare estate in the Uco Valley, Argentina, that the Bonnie family has owned since 2005.

Other culinary events running throughout the summer include convivial workshops with the chef and a comparative ‘French-Argentine sensory journey’ across the company’s terroirs through its varietal and blended wines.

As Séverine (whose husband Jean Jacques Bonnie is a second-generation co-owner of the château, along with his sister Véronique) points out, the château is family-owned and located in what she describes as a “jewel-like setting” within the estate, giving a warm, relaxed and welcoming atmosphere.

“The idea is to share Malartic’s gastronomy and lifestyle and for people to feel like they’re at home, with the château surrounded by the gardens, park and vineyard,” she explains.

Visitors are encouraged to immerse themselves in the estate’s 73ha and see Château Malartic-Lagravière’s strong agro-ecological philosophy in action, starting, naturally, with its vineyards. “It all starts in the vineyard – we are nothing without the terroir, so we show visitors the vines, they can see the green cover in the vineyard, we explain why we work with horses, and why we invest in eco-grazing to maintain the level of herbs in our rows,” she explains.

The team has worked with La Bulle Verte – a slow exploration network, to create a slow tourism activity, with appbased videos and audio guides to help visitors explore the wooded trails and meadows of the estate, and learn about its approach to sustainable viticulture.

“It’s important to us that people realise what we’re doing in the vineyard and why – that it’s better for the plants, the grapes and the wines,” Bonnie adds.

And nowhere can this approach be seen better than in the wine itself, particularly the Château Malartic-Lagravière red 2020, the first vintage produced after a “significant turning-point in the winemaking”, which brought greater understanding of the dry, gravelly, well drained soils of its terroir. The team works with minimal intervention to highlight the purity of the fruit, which results in a wine with greater depth, elegance and tension, and brighter fruit

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