Preparing the “Wine Industry Event of the Year”

This year’s Fête de la Fleur will be hosted by Château Malartic-Lagravière. Since the spectacular metamorphosis carried out by Alfred- Alexandre and Michèle Bonnie when they arrived in February 1997, Château Malartic-Lagravière has flourished under the management of their children Véronique and Jean-Jacques, accompanied by their respective spouses Bruno and Séverine. We asked Séverine Bonnie what the biggest challenge has been in organising the event.

The challenge is in fine-tuning the entire team working on the event – the Maître de Chais and the Chef de Culture have been working with us for 10 months – so it’s a family and personal adventure, but also that of a team who are all proud to prepare the property to receive the crème de la crème of the industry on the 21st June. The greatest satisfaction will be if each guest leaves having felt that it was really “their” evening.

The magic of combining your products with the brilliance of Yannick Alléno must be incredible. How closely does he work with the winemakers? Is the menu designed for the wines, or are the wines simply able to “match” the menu?

I met Yannick Alléno a little over two years ago, when he told me he loved wine, so he came to visit us and we began working on marriages of food and wine. Today, on the menu of Le Doyen in Paris, where he was given three Michelin Stars, he has created a marriage between Wagyu beef and the Malartic-Lagravière 2005 red wine. When we told him about the Fête de la Fleur he was on board straight away for the project. There are of course other grand Médoc Châteaux and left bank wines, so we have had five or six sessions where we worked on the pairing of the dishes with the wines, and I can say the marriages are very precise, very well chosen, with the menu designed specifically for the wines at hand, conceived step by step. He will be there with his two chefs, and he has worked very closely with the caterers who will be using a 500 square-metre tented kitchen for the occasion.

Photo:  Bonnie family