Last June, French glassmaker Lalique, known for its beautiful array of glass and crystal ware, relaunched the famed Sauternes winery Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey, which it acquired in 2014, as an upscale bed and breakfast. The Premier Grand Cru Classé vineyard turns 400 years old this year, and in celebration of that milestone, Lalique has created a special commemoration barrel made entirely from its top-of-the-line crystal.
“This extraordinary piece, crafted at the Lalique factory, showcases the outstanding skills and know-how of our master glassmakers and the standards of excellence for which we strive.” – Silvio Denz, Chairman and CEO of Lalique
Completely see-through, the Bordeaux-style barrel, known locally as a barrique, has the distinction of being the world’s first completely translucent barrel. Two years in the making, it has been filled with 225 litres of the Château Lafaurie-Premier Grand Cru Classé 2013 Premier Grand Cru Classé, the first vintage to be produced under the new owners.
The crystal barrique, which is currently presented at the main lobby of the Lalique Hotel & Restaurant Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey, is truly a display of Lalique’s technical prowess, for it uses a traditional single-casting technique that hasn’t been employed since 1930 known as “lost-wax casting”. Other noteworthy features include: a monogram engraved with the words “Femme et Raisins (Woman and Grapes)” – first created by René Lalique in 1928 for the first-class sleeping cars on the Côte d’Azur Pullman Express – at the frosted front end; leather straps fastened with crystal cabochons to bind the barrel; as well as a crystal stopper right up top.
Said Silvio Denz, Chairman and CEO of Lalique: “This extraordinary piece, crafted at the Lalique factory, showcases the outstanding skills and know-how of our master glassmakers and the standards of excellence for which we strive. The alliance between Lalique and Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey is a marriage of French savoir-faire and savoir-vivre, a fusion between the gold of Sauternes and the crystal of Alsace.”