The Vineyard & Our Wines

Our vineyard is very small by comparison with our neighbours. We have 2ha of vines (4.5 acres) that used to produce about 9,000 litres a year. I used to do most of the work myself with 12,000 vines to look after. They needed pruning every winter to the tune of up to 15 cuts per vine with secateurs. That’s nearly 200,000 times.

From April the buds grow rapidly and have to be sprayed by tractor every 10 days until the end of July. We de-bud the vines in May to ensure top wine quality, leaving two or three shoots on each stem.

Lindsay supervising the grape picking

The vendange is in mid-September. Since 2011 we have rented our vines to a neighbour and he uses our grapes. The grapes are handpicked, as one of the very few domaines still employing this method.

Pickers hard at work

Our Wine

From 1994 to 2010 we produced our red, rose and white wines made by a well known local oenologue Philippe Croce Spinelli. The last vendange in 2010.

We used to supply Berry Brothers of London back in the day, suppliers to the royal house. A couple of our bottles might even have ended up in the queen’s royal cellar.

There are only a handful of bottles left of the red from our own production, maturing very well, for my own enjoyment, of course.

We decided to end our wine production in 2010 partly because I was reaching 76 years old and because the prices had not changed since 2002 and it became unprofitable. 

Domaine des Aumedes

Neighbouring Domaine des Aumedes has a wonderful rosé which has its origin in Lindsay’s vines surrounding the Bastide. The hard work of pruning, debudding, spraying and the vendange is now done by the neighbour but the grapes come from the very vineyards surrounding the Bastide. It doesn’t get more local than that! Purchasing a couple of bottles of very good value rosé from the region makes for the perfect accompaniment to a bbq, a meal on the terrace or sundowners by the pool.

Our Cuvee Amiral Cabernet Sauvignon appeared in the 2006 Guide Hachette with the comment:

“de fins aromes de fruits rouge, meles de touches animals. La bouche equilibree se developpe longement sur fruits savouroux”. There have been other very favourable comments on this wine.

Of course this serves only to illustrate the quality of the vines and the vinification done by the local winemakers.

“Only 2.60 hectares: the smallest British vineyard in Provence around an 18th century bastide. Lindsay and Anne-Marguerite Phillips, a charming Anglo-Belgian couple, bought the domaine in 1994 and the wine is vinified by Philippe Croce-Spinelli. Produced in very small quantities this 2003 ruby has fine nose of red fruit and earthy flavours, The taste is balanced, long and fruity.”

2006 Guide Hachette lists on page 821 our red Cuvee Amiral Cotes de Provence

“His red has a chocolatey nose, soft silky finish and excellent value.”

The Decanter, Jan 2000 “Reds of Provence”

“We always buy Lindsay’s wines. Now we live part time in Florida we take the trouble to import them direct from St Mark des Omedes every year and they are still good value.”

Gareth Evans, Englewood, Florida.

“Many of the vines on this property are over 50 years old and the owner Lindsay Phillips has been producing wine here for 8 years. This rose is a blend of Mouvedre, Greneache, Cinsault. The resulting wine from this tiny 3 hectare vineyard is a crisp, dry, refreshing rosé suitable for all occasions.” 

Catalogue Fields Wine Merchants, a division of Berry Bros & Rudd, St James’s Street, London. Tel 44 (0)20 77589 5753.
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