At a crossroads, Épargnes is a wine-growing commune. Its village is surrounded by vineyards. On the heights of the hills, you can smell the air of the estuary. Besides, the sea is not far away. From the heart of the village, we are 5 km from the banks of the Gironde. Surrounded by rural communities (Cozes, Arces, Chenac-Saint-Seurin-d'Uzet and a little further Mortagne-sur-Gironde), Épargnes invites you to go green.
Wine-growing land on the hillsides of the Gironde
The Spaniards have always known how to use the earth's resources. For example, from the XNUMXth century, they made lime from the limestone of the plateau. Witness the places known as “le Four à Chaux”, “La Pierrière” or “Le Chaillot” which comes from Celtic and means pebbles. As for the hamlet "La Tuilerie", it recalls the time of the extraction of clay for the manufacture of tiles.
Then, the viticulture moved to Epargnes in the XNUMXth century. The Bons Bois estates produce Cognac and Pineau des Charentes. THE domain of Poncereau de Haut has its roots in the northern sector of the town. By visiting the place, you share the passion of the winegrower's work, the respect for nature and you better understand the culture of the vine over the seasons.
Each stage (vineyard, cellar, vinification, distribution) brings you a little closer to the long-awaited moment: the tasting of Charente wines.
Even further north, the land of savings does not only benefit men. The horses of the GP stables enjoy a place conducive to their well-being and development. This family riding structure offers a variety of activities: lessons, galloping courses, competition outings...
A living heritage, around the church of Epargnes
In the center of the town, at the crossroads of the roads linking Cozes in Mortagne and Arces in Boutenac-Touvent, theSt. Vincent's Church (patron saint of winegrowers) sits enthroned on the village square. Quite rare in the churches of the Pays Royannais and Charente-Maritime, the interior walls are decorated with two liters funeral, a first with two chevrons and a second formed by a band of black paint with an engraved cross honoring a deceased and going around the church (this originality is also found in the church of Mornac-sur-Seudre). But the most surprising in terms of architecture is, without doubt, the external staircase joining the bell tower.
Attached to the church, the old presbytery today welcomes a gastronomic restaurant bourgeois cuisine based on regional products. In particular, you can taste sturgeon and meager fish from the estuary. The building of the presbytery dates from the XNUMXth century. Near the entrance there is a atypical well, with a slate roof reminiscent of the church tower. The terrace opens onto the gardens surrounded by vines.
On leaving the town, a Calvary imposing and rare in its sculptural richness exhibits a Christ on the cross surrounded by the four evangelists.
Near the church, the savings house welcomes visitors for a moment of calm and rest. Bikers on the VTC circuit between La Tremblade and Floirac (a 155 km loop) will be able to take advantage of the tranquility of this beautiful country house to stop off as close as possible to the vineyards.
Nearby, a “Le Bilboquet” sign reminds us that the local discotheque, now closed, was a hotspot for nightlife in the Royan area. Nevertheless, we always dance and have fun at Épargnes, especially during the 3 days of the Pineau Festival in the middle of August. This is an opportunity to discover a region and meet producers who have come to share their know-how. On the program: exhibition of old tractors, vintage flea market, hiking, mower races, concerts, balls and fireworks!