Catherine and Isabelle Orliac are two sixtyish sisters who run Chateau Labastide de Clermont Soubiran.
Their vineyard located in the South West of France boasts a prestigious past, rediscovered recently, as wine supplier to the court of King Louis XVI. In the family home, they resumed production of exceptional wines under the AOC Brulhois that their father Jacques Orliac had obtained.
In november they flew to New York and Los Angeles and they brought in their luggage three wines "Royal Héritage," "Le Prince de Royal Héritage" which is a second wine and "Château Labastide Orliac" that seniors and affluent Americans should love.
M.R.: Where is your vineyard?
I.O.: We are located in the Brulhois area, part of Aquitaine and more precisely north of Gascony on the left bank of the Garonne.
M.R.: Where did you get the idea of starting over the vineyards of the family estate?
For the love of a domain that historically belonged to the Bordeaux area. We produce wines as we have seen done by our father and previous generations before us.
M.R.: Are you really sisters?
I.O.: Yes, of course, Catherine is the eldest. And in France, we produce a wine called "Two sisters in Aquitaine" bearing our portrait.
M.R.: When did you find out that the domain was a supplier to Louis XVI's court?
I.O.: In 2007, in the domain’s archives.
M.R.: What did you do before becoming winemakers?
I.O.: Catherine studied law and Isabelle attended a business school. This has helped us when we took over the domain when our father died.
M.R.: Your Wine "1780 Royal Heritage" was praised by the great sommelier Michel Bettane. How did you arrive at this result?
I.O.: With great tenacity, application and belief
M.R.: What can you tell us of your domain?
I.O.: The soil is key. All that grows on the domain has a wonderful and generous taste and that had already been noticed a few centuries ago.
M.R.: How should you talk about your wines today?
I.O.: They are generous. Our wines have a strong personality. There are unique.
M.R.: What customers are you looking for and what price will they sold the wines of Domaine Labastide Orliac?
I.O.: We think our wines are well suited to baby boomers daring in their tastes but loyal to their brands, committed to quality products, and sensitive to environmental values.
M.R.: What do you do to give its unique taste to your wine?
I.O.: We take care of the wine every step of the way from taking care of the wine to bottling and transportation. But we are not going to give away family secrets!
M.R.:To be distributed in the US is quite an adventure, how did you find an importer?
I.O.: We found our importer on a wine show in China. Now that we have started to be distributed in the US, we want to win the trust of our partners and convince Americans of the excellence of our products.
M.R.: Where to find the wines of Domaine Labastide Orliac in the United States?
I.O.: We are in business to expand our network. We soon will be found in high-end restaurants and shops. Some of our wines are already available online on the Millesima and Le Petit Ballon sites. We plan to develop our own online merchant site. But in the meantime, for the latest information, we advise you to log on our website or send us an email (château.firstname.lastname@example.org).
Interview realised by Marianne Rolot