The Cordeliers name comes from the original occupants of this site, Franciscan monks. They earned the nickname 'Les Cordeliers' during the 7th Crusade, on account of their traditional dress of a large coarse cloak fastened with a cord belt. In 1338 they obtained permission from the Pope to establish a monastery within the walls. It was in this period that the Cordeliers cloister was built.
In 1383, King Richard II of England made a permanent gift of land to the Franciscans, and for four centuries until the onset of the Revolution in 1789 the Cordeliers occupied this site with their church, an entrance courtyard, a winery, a vat room, a cellar, a garden and a dormitory building with six bedrooms.
In the late XIXth century the new owners decided to convert the extensive underground spaces into wineries and bottle cellars. Over the years the winemaking techniques used at LES CORDELIERS have reached a new level of perfection, producing magnificent sparkling wines in these incredible surroundings.
The CORDELIERS site is also famous for its network of underground passages. They are the result of mining for the stone which was subsequently used to build much of Saint-Emilion and certain parts of Bordeaux. Stretching for over 3 kilometres, the tunnels run beneath the streets of Saint- Emilion and beneath the vines of some nearby châteaux before connecting with deep underground cellars. 20m below the surface, these cellars remain at a constant temperature of 12°C all year round, with total darkness which is perfect for the development of our wines, produced here using traditional methods since 1892.
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