Do you dream of spending warm summer evenings sipping wine from your very own vineyard? Property in France with hobby vineyards is an excellent choice for all types of buyers: young couples who want to dive into a new career, city dwellers or retirees looking for a slower pace of life, and families that want to setup a small B&B business to bring in revenue. If buying a hobby vineyard property in France is something that interests you, then consider beginning your search in one of these prime locations.
Bordeaux and Saint-Émilion
The once-aloof Bordeaux is no longer unapproachable, and the casual wine drinker can now feel welcome and at home here. With over 123,000 hectares of vineyards and a selection of diverse climate, soil and varietals, it’s no wonder Bordeaux sells 700 million bottles of wine every year. Visit the lovely Chartrons district, where you’ll find residences of well-known wine merchants from the past. Vineyard property often includes outbuildings, pools and pool houses, and ample space for outdoor entertaining.
Medieval Saint-Émilion has steep streets and slanted vineyards, plus sandy soil that’s known to yield fruity, light wines. If you find a vineyard property with clay or limestone, though, you’ll be able to produce deeper grapes and richer wine. Common varietals in Saint-Émilion include flowery Cabernet Franc and Merlot with notes of cherry and chocolate.
Cahors, a small town in the southwest area of France, is known for deep red wine made from Malbec grapes. In smaller yields, Merlot and Tannat are produced here as well. Unlike other red wine-producing areas of France, Cahors does not yield Cabernet Franc or Cabernet Sauvignon. There are two distinct types of vineyards in Cahors to choose from: in the limestone plateau, you’ll produce higher-tannic wines, while the more gravel-prone slopes see fruity yields.
Though the 14th century Pont Valentre, a bridge that crosses the Lot river, is the most popular attraction in Cahors, the area is also known for its beautiful, intimate gardens that are scattered around the town. Explore several of them by walking the garden trail, and don’t miss Le Jardin de la Sorcière et du Dragon, which has a selection of plants that are a nod to witchcraft.
Occitanie, a region of France that was established in 2016 from the former areas of Languedoc-Roussillon and Midi-Pyrénées, produces practically every variety of wine, including red, white, rosé and sparkling, as well as several classic vintages.
The leisurely town of Collioure, which can be found close to the Spanish border on France’s Catalan coast, has a postcard-perfect fishing port and steep vineyards. Collioure’s appellation, which produce white and light red wines, overlaps with the Banyuls appellation, which is known for its fortified reds. Banyuls, which is similar to port, combines ripe berry aromas with herbs.
Narbonne, celebrated for its artistic and cultural atmosphere, is another great area of Occitanie for hobby vineyard properties. You may find property here with olive oil production possibilities in addition to vineyards, too. There are also plenty of opportunities to tour nearby wineries and vineyards, learn about the region’s history of winemaking, and start collecting unique wines to help train your taste buds.
While it may be best known for its stellar Mediterranean weather, Provence is also a leader in wine, with lavish, luxury chateaux and vineyard properties available. The climate is what makes the wine growing conditions here so wonderful, too, with tons of sunshine, limited rainfall, and warm days followed by cool evenings. Provence is also known for its selection of juniper, lavender, thyme and rosemary, which you’ll notice have a great influence on several area wines.
The coastal town of Bandol produces several rosés and whites, as well as a selection of reds, all yielded from its 1,550 hectares of vineyards. Wines in this area are treated to warm, protected growing conditions, thanks to the surrounding landscape features that keep away the colder winds from the north.
Châteauneuf-du-Pape, in the Rhone Valley, produces robust reds with flavorful, strong attributes like black pepper, spices, strawberries and regional herbs (also called garrigue). Wine in this area isn’t typically aged, as its best when it’s still young. To expand your wine knowledge, visit Château de Beaucastel, where you can try several of the Grand Vin wines.
The Luberon, which is south of Mont Ventoux, yields Syrah and Viognier, and vineyard property here looks out on the mountains. The Luberon’s medieval hamlets and unique villages go back more than 1,000 years, and homes here may include areas for winemaking, plus pools and plenty of privacy.
Saint-Tropez, one of the world’s most lavish and prestigious coastal towns, has vineyard properties to match: some homes have two vineyards, not just one. It’s also common to find property with a wine cellar or olive yard, which you can visit when you’re not passing time in your sprawling mansion.
The Var department produces light and fresh rosés as well as full-bodied reds. The area’s rosés and reds are made with Cinsaut, Carignan and Grenache grapes, while the small amount of white wine produced here comes from Vermentino grapes.
Var is also home to Chateau Miraval, the estate that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie purchased in 2008 and that includes 150 acres of vineyards. Wines produced here include a rosé, two whites and one red. Some of the estate’s grapes are blended with grapes sourced from other vineyards.
One Last Thought
Running a vineyard can be hard work, even if you have just a small area of hobby vines to tend to, but it’s an activity that even complete beginners can pick up. Hire a team to care for your vineyard full-time or have an expert teach you the basics for two seasons before you go it alone.
HOMEHUNTS luxury property agents are able to select beautiful, high-end vineyard properties in France based on your specific search criteria. Use the property search above to browse our selection of luxury homes. You can also speak directly to one of our consultants by calling +33 (0)970 44 66 43.