Clos Sainte Magdeleine (François Sack)
A stunning fishing port on the Mediterranean, Cassis is home to 14 producers who cultivate 180 hectares of vines in an appellation which is gradually shrinking due to real estate encroachment. Clos Sainte Magdeleine has belonged to the family of Madame Sack (née Zafiropulo) since 1922 and the headquarters of this 20 hectare estate is an impressive art-deco mansion lying just below the Cap Canaille (France’s tallest coastal cliff). François Sack and his son Jonathan (who is now President of AOC Cassis) are the first to admit their good fortune but still retain a sense of perspective, often being seen carrying out local deliveries by scooter which is the only way to access the crowded quayside in the summer season. The vast majority of Cassis’ production is consumed locally and out of doors but it would erroneous to assume that the wines of Cassis are simply for quaffing on holiday. The main emphasis here is on dry white wine of which Clos Sainte Magdeleine’s is amongst the very best. This small, prestigious family-run estate also produces a fine and elegant rosé.