Wine: La Vieille Ferme at Costco

Château de Beaucastel

Jean Pierre Perrin established La Vieille Ferme over 35 years ago to produce an inexpensive Rhône wine to sell by direct mail in France. He used the same grape varieties planted at the family's Château de Beaucastel. The result was an immediate success in France.

Perrin is fifth generation owner of one of the greatest domaines in Chateauneuf du Pape - Chateau de Beaucastel. Beaucastel has been producing some of the world's greatest wines since early in the 20th century (but its lineage goes back to the 16th century).

La Vieille Ferme Cotes du Ventoux

Initially, Jean Pierre made only Côtes du Rhône, but steeply rising grape prices in 1976 caused him to switch to Côtes du Ventoux. La Vieille Ferme was introduced to the United States in 1970.

La Vieille Ferme Cotes du Ventoux Rouge (red wine) is a blend of 50% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 15% Carignan and 15% Cinsault. The wine is 1.5 L, 13.5% alc., $10.99 at Costco.

The southern slopes of the Mont Ventoux (1912 metres/ 5736 feet) are 25 km/40 miles to the east of the town of Orange. The vineyards lie around the towns of Mazan, Moimoiron, Villes sur Auzon, Puymeras and Saint-Didier, where the average height above sea level is 300 metres/1000 feet.

The soil varies according to altitude but consists for the most part of deposits left around the base of the chalky Mont Ventoux by the seas of the Tertiary period. Red Mediterranean soils blend with chalk debris and round stones.

The grapes are lightly crushed and fermented in cement vats of 150 and 300 hectolitres. The fermentation is classic and extended. The wine is kept in both vats and large oak barrels for ten months, then bottled in July.


Grenache (pronounced gren-ash) is one of the most widely planted red wine grape varieties in the world. Grenache is the dominant variety in most Southern Rhône wines, especially in Châteauneuf-du-Pape where it is typically over 80% of the blend. In Australia it is typically blended in "GSM" blends with Syrah and Mourvèdre

Syrah or Shiraz

Syrah or Shiraz is a dark-skinned grape grown throughout the world and used primarily to produce powerful red wines.


Carignan is a red wine grape that originated in Cariñena, Aragon and was later transplanted to Sardinia, and much of the New World. Along with Aramon, it considered one of the main grapes responsible for France's wine lake. The wine lake refers to the continuing supply surplus of wine (supply glut) produced in the European Union.


Cinsault (pronounced "san-so") is a red wine grape, whose heat tolerance and productivity make it important in Languedoc-Roussillon and the former French colonies of Algeria and Morocco. It is often blended with grapes such as Grenache and Carignane to add softness and bouquet. The vine is very drought resistant, it can produce heavy crops with large cylindrical bunches of black grapes with fairly thick skins.

La Vieille Ferme.
What to do, what to do... Grapes & Greens.
La Vieille Ferme Red 2006 AOC Côtes du Ventoux


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