WHAT IS HOTEL LALIQUE :
I was a little lucky that I was able to see this hotel and restaurant when it first opened in order to review it for a publication in the USA. So when my husband took me there for my 40th birthday, I knew how lucky I was to be spending the night there. Add having dinner at the incredible 2 star Michelin restaurant headed by Chef Jerome Schilling on top of it all. It was incredible.
While the history of the building is interesting, I think this property really stands out thanks to Lalique interior design. Lalique stemware, service wear, even down to the design on the Lafaurie Peyraguey wine bottles themselves gives Lafaurie Peyraguey an elegance not found at any other Sauternes producer.
I eventually took home some beautiful little bird knife rests that you can get in the shop (which also holds the wine tastings) to never forget this experience.
STAY AT HOTEL LALIQUE LAFAURIE PEYRAGUEY :
What will impress you most is the level of service and attention to detail. With a high number of staff to clients in the relatively small hotel, expect stellar service. The rooms themselves are stunning, my personal preference is for the green textile rooms (alternative is a deep red). All the lines are clean with a art deco feel. Lalique crystal is used in the bathrooms for faucets and branded toiletries. We really lucked out with our room, the only one with a massive bathtub and shower (the rest are shower only).
The hotel has a lovely cocktail bar/lounge for the winter months and an equally lovely courtyard for the summer. Here you can take your evening cocktail or breakfast during your stay.
While there isn’t a pool or spa on site, this isn’t the reason you will be in Sauternes in the first place. The incredible vineyards which have produced sweet white wines for centuries surround you. While the small village of Sauternes itself you could almost drive through, it’s worth a stop for the many cavistes happy to share their knowledge and many decent restaurants (two main ones are going through massive changes so summer 2022 should be interesting!). Read more here
DINE WITH CHEF JEROME SCHILLING :
First of all, Chef Jerome Schilling is simply put, a nice person. We’ve met him around a few times and he’s very approachable and clearly great with people. He reminds me of a Chef I used to work with, Akreme Benallal (who he is actually friends with), able to make you feel at home and welcome. So the ambiance in this rather exquisite dinning room, while tables are covered with Lalique, is still calm and not stuffy. The spring sunset is the perfect time to start your dining experience so you can watch the colors change over it vines. Dinner will spread over around three hours, or more, as was our case.
There were so many dishes, so many local ingredients from Aquitaine caviar to seasonal tomatoes and local duck. While everything was perfect, I have to say the dish that I loved so much was the salt baked eggplant. Every eggplant deserves that treatment. It was divine. For me this is the telling of a great chef, someone who can take a simple ingredient and find a unique way to cook it that really celebrates the product.
We asked the knowledgeable sommelier for the wine pairing and he did not disappoint. The local orange wine might have been my favorite. We asked for all wines from outside of Bordeaux, since living here you feel like you drink them all, but this was his surprise wine. Brilliant. Overall, it was some of the best wines we have ever had and so much fun (defiantly felt my 40 years the next day!).
VISIT AND TASTING :
Like all Sauternes producers, the best time to come is in the fall when botrytis (noble rot) will be infecting the grapes. However, you’ll always get a great tour and seeing the grapes on the vines during any part of their cycle of life is interesting and will have a story. The visit includes the tank room (one was underground which is a unique feature. The chai has classic French oak barrels, but also one solid crystal barrel…made by Lalique. Be sure to book in advance if you would like to have a visit and tasting.
Chateau Lafaurie Peyraguey, 1 Les Places, 33210 BOMMES / +33 5 24 22 80 11 / https://www.lafauriepeyragueylalique.com/
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