Domaine Leos: the historic home of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue
The high Plateau de Margoye – where the olive grove of Domaine Leos planted – is at the origin of the founding of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue. Historian Alber Ceccarelli reminds that initially the town of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue was named “Macao” and that it originated on the Plateau of Margoye, the highest point of the town, before being relocated to its current site.
In fact, it is still possible to find there roman oppidum stones as well as traces of the fortifications that were built on the highest part of the plateau to protect its first inhabitants. The same stones were used to renovate existing buildings.
* (« L’histoire de L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue / Des origines à 1274 » / Edition Compo typo Relief Mai 1987) - ** (dont parlait déjà Grégoire de Tours dans son « Histoire des Francs au VIème siècle »)
A Unique location and terroir
Domaine Leos extends on a 20-acre plateau on the heights of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue. It has a magnificent view of the town, of the Mounts Vaucluse and of Montagne Luberon.
It is a small plateau with a slight slope made of slab rocks covered with highly calcareous, rocky and shallow soil that is particularly fitted to the grow olive trees, oak truffle and certain variety of vines.
Up until 1956, the land was planted with olive groves, vines, almond trees and truffle oaks. As in almost the whole region of Provence, olive trees froze in February 1956, and the land remained uncultivated: indeed, while the old vineyards were uprooted and replaced by pine trees, the rest of the land was left fallow and therefore free of chemicals for 50 years.
Bought out in 2007 by celebrated French singer Patrick Bruel (see his interview under “Interview of Patrick Bruel, Owner of the Domaine”), the estate went through a profound restructuration and conservation in order to protect the existing biotope and regenerate the oldest plantations.
Cuttings and grafting of the 300 olive trees on the estate helped revive more than 800 olive trees.
Beginning in 2011, over 1000 additional olive trees were planted, making Domaine Leos the first and sole maker of “extra virgin” olive oil of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue.
During the winter of 2017/2018, 800 new olive trees older than 15 years old were planted, raising the total of the domain to 2, 600