Canal cruising is more than floating along slowly in a barge. Wine tasting and cruising was the perfect way to spend the day on the Athos Canal du Midi.
The itinerary for our first full day on the Athos Canal du Midi barge took us to the House of Noilly Prat in Marseillan for a wine tasting. The famous vermouth company, owned by Martini & Rossi, was developed by French herbalist Joseph Noilly from Lyon in 1813. Noilly Prat was officially created when Louis Noilly became business partners with his son-in-law, Claudius Prat. The company moved to Marseillan in the 1850s because of its ideal location. Proximity to Marseille enabled easy shipping and the sea spray from the coastal location aided in oxidizing and aging the wine.
The location was perfect for wine tasting and for starting our cruise of the Canal du Midi, too!
Noilly Pratt’s three variants of vermouth is made totally in the factory we visited — except for bottling. Our tour followed each process.
Wine Tasting and Canal Cruising
Entering the Canal du Midi
From the harbor in Marseillan the Athos canal barge approached the entrance to the Canal du Midi. It wasn’t long before we were at the first of the canal locks we would encounter over the next days of our cruise.
Enjoy the video and the ride!