L’Orpailleur gets a totally redesigned visitors area
Charles-Henri de Coussergues, vintner and co-owner of l’Orpailleur vineyard, along with his partners Hervé Durand, Frank Furtado and Pierre Rodrigue, today officially opened their refurbished visitors area, entirely redesigned just in time for the harvest.
This project, which represents an investment of over $400,000, was made possible thanks to financial contributions from the Québec Ministry of Tourism and the Eastern Townships Tourism Association, and completed in close collaboration with the Société du réseau Économusée, of which the Dunham vineyard is a member. It is the culmination of a process of reflection aimed at maintaining L’Orpailleur’s leadership in local incoming tourism.
Explaining the concept behind the project, Mr. de Coussergues explains: “The emphasis we place on offering our visitors discovery and an unforgettable experience is part of our DNA, our mission. Since day one, we have worked to demystify the world of viticulture and its artisans in Québec by offering guided tours and interpretation.” He continues: “This overhaul, including of our economuseum component, reflects our desire to enhance the quality of this experience and strengthen our position as a popular wine tourism destination in Québec, while maintaining this very important connection with our customers.”
Pioneer in wine tourism in Québec
Minister of Tourism Caroline salutes this initiative: “Farm tourism is very popular the world over and wine tourism is among the activities that are arousing growing interest among tourist clienteles. For 37 years, the Orpailleur vineyard has refined its art and stands out as a leader in Québec’s viticulture sector. I am convinced that visitors from at home and abroad will discover with pleasure its enhanced facilities and will retain fond memories of their experience.”
Jean-Michel Ryan, President of the Eastern Townships Tourism Association, says: “We are pleased to support innovative enterprises such as L’Orpailleur vineyard, a pioneer of Québec’s winemaking industry and one of its greatest success stories.” He adds: “L’Orpailleur is an eloquent example of the art de vivre for which our region is known. The vineyard’s new economuseum facilities will acquaint visitors with the centuries-old art of transforming grapes into delectable wines. The fact that the vineyard is part of this network of artisan museums will give it visibility that goes well beyond the boundaries of the Townships. Congratulations to Charles-Henri de Coussergues and all his team!”
A carefully designed experience
According to Carl-Éric Guertin, Director general of the ÉCONOMUSÉE Network Society: “L’Orpailleur’s facilities have been completely revamped from start to finish, to incorporate the various aspects of the economuse experience into every stage of the visit, improving its flow and user-friendliness. The educational component is now omnipresent, from the history of Québec vineyards and winemaking to grape-growing, wine-aging, the roles of the chef de culture (crop manager) and maître de chai (cellar master), and finally, the issues of sustainable cultivation and climate challenges. The result is that the feeling of discovery and of getting to know the artisan is everywhere.”
Comfortable surroundings, attractive design
The entire space has been redesigned to be more functional, welcoming and warm. The materials were carefully chosen to reflect the artisan’s work. Oak, used in barrel-making, is everywhere and oak barrels have even been refashioned into pieces of furniture. Cork has also been given a place of honour. The heart of the main room and its most important feature is the elegant tasting counter with a spectacular round section reminiscent of an old grape press.
A visit is essential, at any season
To celebrate the harvest season and the festive atmosphere of the Brome-Missisquoi Wine Route, a guided tour of the vineyard is offered three times a day, every day until October 31. Admission is free and visitors can purchase their favourite wine from the artisan, and even add some locally grown products chosen by L’Orpailleur to their basket. There are discoveries to be made outdoors and indoors, rain or shine or… snow! In fact, L’Orpailleur is open year-round and, thanks to its new facilities, including an area with a fireplace, visiting a vineyard can be an original and epicurean activity in any season. Touring a vineyard in the snow is certainly unique to Québec and a great way to celebrate our four seasons!
L’Orpailleur vineyard, a pioneer in its industry in Québec, planted its first vines in 1982 in the beautiful valley of Dunham. The 10 wines of the vineyard’s Cuvée Classique family of wines constantly push the limits of taste to satisfy wine lovers. The Cuvée Signature family reflects the indomitable passion of the vineyard’s four founding vintners for their craft. With the support of Quebecers, L’Orpailleur vineyard is now the Québec leader in sales at the SAQ. Its wines are available at 335 SAQ branches as well as at many restaurants in Québec. The vineyard has won more than 150 medals and has been a member of the Société du réseau Économusée since 2001. https://orpailleur.ca/en/.