Clos Montmartre: The Remaining Vineyard in Paris

Mention French wines and you immediately think of the famed terroirs of Bordeaux, Burgundy or Alsace. But little is often said about a Parisian wine that is produced in the heart of Montmartre.

Montmartre Vineyard - Paris

Amble along the cobblestone streets leading to the junction of rue des Saules and rue Saint-Vincent and you see a vineyard stretching over 1600 m2 on a steep hill. This is Clos Montmartre, the only remaining and working vineyard in Paris.

Montmartre Vineyard - Paris
Clos Montmartre in September

Vineyards once covered Butte Montmartre. Back when Paris was known as Lutèce, there was a temple dedicated to the Roman god of wine, Bacchus. Wine production continued from the 12th century under a Benedictine Abbey which owned a wine press to the early 20th century until the crops were destroyed by a bout of phylloxera.

Montmartre Vineyard - Paris

In 1933, the site was saved from development and vines were planted by the Mairie de Paris. 27 varietals make up the wine but it consists primarily of Gamay and Pinot Noir.

Montmartre Vineyard - Paris

You won’t find Montmartre wines in restaurants or bottle shops. The yield is auctioned every year with the proceeds going to charity. As for the wine itself, it is not known to be drinkable. According to a popular 17th century dictum, it has diuretic properties.

C’est du vin de Montmartre
Qui en boit pinte en pisse quarte

The wine of Montmartre
Whoever drinks a pinte (0.93 litres) pisses a quart (67 litres)!

Montmartre Vineyard - Paris

The vineyard is closed to the public except on special occasions such as la Fête des Jardins which is held in autumn. We were fortunate to be in Paris one September and had the opportunity to get close to the vines and grapes.

Montmartre Vineyard - Paris Montmartre Vineyard - Paris

The wine harvest is celebrated during La Fête des Vendanges de Montmartre, an annual event that takes place in the second weekend in October.

Montmartre Vineyard - Paris
Clos Montmartre in November

Clos Montmartre
14-18 rue des Saules
75018 Paris
Métro: Lamarck-Coulaincourt

La Fête des Vendanges de Montmartre
http://www.fetedesvendangesdemontmartre.com/

This article is posted on Gourmantic.com. All rights reserved. Copyright © 2014

Clos Montmartre: The Remaining Vineyard in Paris was last modified: January 21st, 2012 by Corinne

Corinne

Corinne is the founder and editor of Gourmantic. An avid scribe, she has taken pen to paper since the age of five. Her repertoire includes long works of fiction, short stories and travelogues. She is a winner of the GT travel writing competition, has judged the Australasian Whisky Awards for 2013 and several cocktail competitions. She is also named in the Australian Bartender Most Influential List for 2013.
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24 Comments:

  1. It’s my dream to taste this wine. Sigh.

    • Really? I’m told it’s not drinkable at all! Apparently you can buy sample bottles from the Montmartre tourist office. I’ve never been but worth checking out next time!

  2. [New on G] Clos Montmartre: The Remaining Vineyard in Paris http://bit.ly/dfMqm4 #paris #wine

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  3. [New on G] Clos Montmartre: The Remaining Vineyard in Paris http://bit.ly/dfMqm4 #paris #wine

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  4. in follow up to this weekend’s Montmartre wine fete: RT @gourmantic Clos Montmartre: The Remaining Vineyard in Paris http://bit.ly/dfMqm4

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  5. I love it when you cover the things in my own neighborhood just as much as when you cover new and exciting places that I’ve never been. Perfect timing with your post just in follow up to the Fete des Vendanges this past weekend!

    • Thanks Forest, I really appreciate it :)
      I wish I could have been there for the fete. Maybe one year we can time our visit to coincide with it.

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  7. Just love the gorgeous colors of those leaves. :-)

  8. Move lovely photos! Just love this post…& had no idea that the wines are not sold to the public. And also about the hilarious dictum – wish I could get my hands on a bottle & see for myself :) Another Paris great to add to the list, thanks!

    • You could try the tourist office in Montmartre at Place du Tertre and see if you could score a bottle. if you do, and put the dictum to the test, I hope we get a report! :)
      Thank you for the kind words :)

  9. RT @gourmantic: Clos Montmartre: The Remaining Vineyard in Paris http://bit.ly/dfMqm4 #paris #wine #travel

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  10. Lovely story and the gorgeous photos make me want to go to Paris RIGHT NOW! This and your other stories remind me I need to spend more time in Monmarte.

    • You and me both! I always want to go to Paris and on recent visits, I have sure we went to Montmartre again. I could walk around for hours!

  11. I meant “Montmartre” :-) Reason why I will never master the French language: Must throw all ‘f’onetic spelling (and pronunciation) I learned in Italian OUT the window.

    • No worries :) I’m the same when it comes to Italian and Spanish. I’m sure I’ve invented a kind of italo-span-cais that only I can understand!!

  12. you had me at grapes…..

  13. What a perfectly sweet little ivy-clad maison for MM’ remaining vineyard. Fetch me a pint of the good stuff and my pisspot!

  14. Pingback: Parisian Wine Celebrated in Montmartre Festival - NYTimes.com

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