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Domaine de Frégate

photo of domaine de frégate in Bandol wine region of Provence

Domaine de Frégate is a premium Provençal producer that lies on the Mediterranean coast between the towns of Bandol and St Cyr Sur Mer, near the coast of Marseille, in the region of Bandol.

Bandol is one of the premium sub-appellations of Provence. The poor soils result in very low yields and high quality grapes. 

The vineyard of Domaine Frégate is located on a rocky headland overlooking the sea. In fact it is the only Bandol vineyard with vines literally overhanging the sea. This gives the vineyard a unique micro-climate with humid sea air plus 320 days of sun annually, making it a perfect climate for the grapes of this appellation. It’s a stunning place. You can imagine the blue sky, blue sea, white rocky soil and the seasonal colours of the vineyard. 

Frégate is from an old provençal word “fregato” meaning breaking . It refers to smashing the rocks in order to plant the vines and olive trees. Domaine de Frégate is a very rocky site and the rocks have been stacked up in low dry stone walls in the vineyard. 

Legend has it also that a frigate/sailing ship (frégate in french) was shipwrecked on the rocks at the foot of the vineyard. A picture of a frigate appears on the label. The French love this play on words with the name referring to both the ship and the breaking up of the rocks!

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