France: Languedoc Roussillon

Around Narbonne

The wines of the Corbières and Fitou areas
By Richard James

This Guide was last updated on 03 February 2010
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Château de Lastours

Address: Lastours, 11490 Portel des Corbières
Tel: 04 68 48 64 74  Fax: 04 68 40 06 94
Geo-coordinates:  Latitude: 43:3:13N (43.05360)    Longitude: 2:53:51W (2.89761) 

This awe-inspiring property nestles high up in the Corbières guarded by enormous windmills. It’s well-signposted from the A9 motorway (the exit for Sigean) and off the Portel-Durban road – keep following the winding track upwards until you reach the smart cellar/offices. The owners (the Filhet-Allard group bought it in 2004) have invested heavily in the vineyards – there’s been a massive replanting programme instigated by the uncompromising estate manager Xavier de Rozières, which won’t be completed until 2015; and 2010 will see the opening of a stunning new 1700m2 landscaped winery. All this has paid off in quality terms from the 2004 and especially 2005 vintages onwards, and the wines that follow on each year look more and more promising, although they should be careful not to over-oak certain reds!. Favourites include the Simone Descamps and Château de Lastours Reserve labels, and their white Corbières also shows fair depth and class. There’s a very good on-site restaurant called La Bergerie (see ‘Places to Eat’) next to the tasting room.

Useful information: Shop is open October – May 10.00-12.30 and 13.30-18.00; June – September 10.00-13.30 and 14.30-19.00. You can also book a 4x4 ride around this huge wild estate, which is great fun and gives you a better idea of how varied the vineyard terrain is.


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