Last month Sauce travelled to the beautiful village of Cotignac in Provence to visit Stephen and Jeany Cronk, co-founders of the UK’s favorite rose wine, Mirabeau en Provence. Travel experiences are of course best shared so we didn’t go alone, joined by photographers and content creators Victoria Metaxas, Nathan Rollinson, Claire Menary, Camille Kenny-Ryder and Jessica Bride, and talented chefs Katie Brigstock & Safia Shakarchi from Cook & Baker, Niki Downs, our brands division account director, jetted off to Nice with British Airways to find out more about Mirabeau.
Taking off from Heathrow Terminal 5, thoughts quickly turned to snacks for the journey. Working with the brilliant Fortnum & Mason team at Seven Dials PR, the group was treated to first class food to take on board, handily packed up in Fortnum & Mason Hamperlings. To find out more about this service and to be envy of all other passengers on board your flight from T5, visit: http://mediacentre.heathrow.com/pressrelease/details/81/Brand-News-22/5485
Stuck on the runway for longer than anticipated, Niki handed out the ‘trip treats’ from Mirabeau en Provence brand partners and friends, Missoma jewellery and Taylor Morris Eyewear. After all, no trip to sunny Provence would be complete without new accessories!
Except when we arrived in Nice, it seemed we’d left the sun behind in London. Not letting the chic French raindrops stop play, we hopped into the Mirabeau Land Rover with co-founder Stephen, Cotignac bound. An hour or so journey into Provence and we’d arrived. It was agreed immediately that we never wanted to leave and could see exactly why is was that Jeany and Stephen decided to up sticks and move their lives from London to this perfectly Provençal village.
Our first evening in Provence was spent meeting the animals surrounding the Cronk’s family home, enjoying freshly made pizza and of course, copious amounts of rose.
About Mirabeau en Provence – words by Jeany Cronk
Stephen had been in the corporate world for 15 years and in August 2008 turned down a promotion that would have meant more money but also more stress, longer hours and less time with his young family. For many years we had been dreaming and talking about moving to France to make our own wine, but the moment never seemed quite right to make the big leap.
Soon after, a good redundancy offer seemed the perfect opportunity to turn the dream into reality and after selling our beloved house; we left the leafy suburbs of south-west London in August 2009. Our worldly possessions were packed up on the back of a truck and with barely a word of French between us, we headed south to a small village called Cotignac, in the heart of Provence.
We spent a year getting our bearings, learning to live the Provençal way and criss-crossing the country researching and finding the best vineyards to work with. The next step was setting up a small wine business with the principle objective of making a Provence rosé that would be regarded as one of the very best from the region, while building a brand that people would grow to love. In order to achieve this aim, we put together a highly experienced winemaking team and we threw our heart and soul into the brand and innovative communications with our customers. Mirabeau is now being sold in more than 50 markets and we’ve won medals and earned acclaim from some of the world’s toughest wine critics, but what really makes us happiest is that our wines are an integral part of people having a great time together.
Day 2 – Croissants in Cotignac
Eager to capture the delights of market day, the group woke early. Dressed in our finest nod to French chic outfits kindly gifted by Pampelone, we walked the streets of the village in ore of its architecture, fresh food, happy faces and taste bud tantalising smells from the cafes, bakeries and artisan producers.
Lunch was to be prepared by Cook & Baker, who spent their morning foraging the market for the juiciest tomatoes, the plumpest potatoes and the most pungent garlic bulbs, whilst the photographers snapped each and every rustic corner, front door and shop front they could find.
Returning to the Cronk’s family home, fresh peonies in hand, the group began setting the scene for the most perfectly Provençal outdoors feast. Joined by Mirabeau family including Mirabeau Classic, Mirabeau Pure, Mirabeau Etoile and Mirabeau La Folie, we enjoyed lunch, shared stories, took plenty of pictures and took in the view.
Following lunch, we made the most of the sunshine and took a trip over to the charming village of Entrecasteaux.
Having vowed never to leave Cotignac, the group reluctantly packed up and returned to the UK, taking with us many happy memories and many more incredible images.
If you’d like to find out more about Mirabeau en Provence please visit: https://www.mirabeauwine.com/
And if you’d like to read more about our trip to Cotignac, please visit the blogs of some of the fabulous photographers who joined us! More pictures can be found upon their Instagram feeds. Links below!
Huge thank you to Stephen and Jeany Cronk for hosting us, Cook & Baker chefs Safia and Katie for cooking, and Milly, Claire, Nathan, Victoria and Jessica for joining Sauce on what was a very successful press trip. Here’s to a summer of rose!
You’ll find Mirabeau this summer at Taste of London, Goodwood and Big Feastival – we look forward to seeing your #MirabeauMoments
Cook & Baker