Via Caritatis: Our Story
A 700-year-old tradition of excellence
In 1309, in the foothills of Mont Ventoux, France, in the Southern Rhône, Pope Clement V planted the very first papal vineyard – now known as Via Caritatis. But what began then was so much more than a vineyard—it was a vision of winemaking motivated by a spirit of charity. Today, more than 700 years later, that spirit of charity characterized by mutual service, generosity, and sharing, guides our community of monks and nuns from the Benedictine Abbey of Le Barroux in their winemaking. Here at Via Caritatis, we are committed to excellence, responsible stewardship of nature, and the faithful continuation of the profound legacy we inherited.
The result? Some of the finest wine France has to offer.
Learn more about our rich history and path to excellence in the timeline below.
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St. Benedict is Born
In 480, St. Benedict is born, inaugurating a spirit of hard work that infuses the monastic life of future Benedictines as they plant vineyards in the centuries that follow.
A Papal Vineyard is Planted
In 1305, Pope Clement V moves to Provence and plants the first papal vineyard in the foothills of Mount Ventoux in 1309.
A Legacy Renewed
The winegrowers in Mont Ventoux formally establish a winery on the same location of the papal vineyard on March 24, 1929.
677 years after the papal vineyard’s planting, the Ventoux winegrowers welcome the Benedictine monks of St. Madeleine back to work in the Mont Ventoux winery.
Terraces are Restored
The Ventoux winegrowers restore the old terraces, some of which were from 400-500 A.D, and create exceptional vineyards, cultivated according to specifications previously unheard of in Provence.
A Partnership for Excellence
In 2011, the monks consult with leading winegrowing experts to formulate plans to modernize their growing methods while observing guidelines for organic agriculture, enabling them to present a broader range of wines.
New Terraces are Built
The winegrowers begin to implement the new growing methods and plant an assortment of terraces, improving the quality of the wines produced.
Via Caritatis is Born
Following a bountiful harvest in 2015, the monks, nuns, and local winegrowers of the region cement their partnership with winegrowing experts under a shared name: Via Caritatis.