Hotel review: Chateau Cordeillan-Bages

Fancy an indulgent weekend away with great food and amazing wine? We’ve recently little gem nestling in the French countryside


hâteau Cordeillan-Bages is just a 40-minute drive from Bordeaux airport, restored by the famed Medoc wine family, Cazes, in 1989, with close links to the fifth growth Grand Crus classés, Château Lynch-Bages. The Lynch-Bages winery was closed down in 2017 for an extensive renovation to embark on a new chapter in its history. The renownded American architect, Chien Chung Pei, has given it a modern spruce, set to open its doors in 2020.

A series of colourful Ferraris were parked outside on arrival, hinting at the hotel’s well-heeled clientele. Contemporary rooms have a refined palette of muted greys and Scandi-style lighting brings character to subdued suites. All 28 rooms are backdropped by the magnolia gardens or courtyard.

If the weather permits, enjoy a glass of Lynch Bages in the residential-style lounge that sits on the edge of the vineyard.  From there you can admire works by an array of contemporary artists that grace the walls — Pierre Alechinsky, Emilio Perez and Gérard Titus-Carmel.

Other than excellent wine, the hotel’s Michelin-star food and fresh local produce independent to the region are also show stealers. The kitchen is overseen by rising star Executive Chef Julien Lefebvre, who secured his first Michelin star for the restaurant in 2018. His passion for working with local producers spills into his classic dishes and regional specialities, including Laurent Hullot’s asparagus, caviar from Aquitaine and snails from Saint-Laurent-Medoc. Highlights include line-caught meagre, followed by strawberry tart with almond custard and green aniseed.

The following day we headed to the nearby village of Bages for a spot of lunch at Café Lavinal before heading off on our bike adventure. The café is overseen by chef Lefebvre and received Bib Gourmand status last year.

A post-lunch cycle along the country paths took us through the vineyards of renowned Chateau Latour, Mouton Rothschild and Lafite Rothschild, before a thorough tour of Ormes de Pez winery just 15 minutes from the village. The tour includes an informative wine tasting session. By the end of the day all that was left to do was enjoy a dip in the 25-metre heated outdoor pool back at the chateau.

Our final day saw us whisked over to the La Petite Canau farm, one of the region’s leading oyster farms. The freshest oysters are transported here from Brittany and we joined a tour to discover how they grow and how they’re farmed. At the end of our visit, there was ample time to taste the oysters with a glass of chilled white wine.

The verdict
This grand chateau, a member of Relais & Chateaux, exudes charm and sophistication. Alongside its Michelin-star food, fantastic wine and world-renowned vineyards, it really is the perfect place to enjoy an indulgent weekend break.

Words: Zana Wilberforce

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