As the 2007 Rugby World Cup approaches, the Bordeaux wine trade is trying to capitalise on its ties to some of the teams.

With the Irish team due to play two first round matches in the city’s Chaban Delmas stadium, some chateaux with Irish heritage – such as Lynch Bages – are holding special events for the public. In addition, the Côtes de Bordeaux has been selected as the official wine supplier for the Irish team.

In Margaux, four chateaux – Rauzan-Gassies, Kirwan, Prieuré-Lichine and La Tour de Bessan – are running gourmet day tours from Monday to Friday (avoiding weekend match days) for the duration of the tournament. In keeping with the rugby spirit, all visitors will be given a commemorative gift.

‘Rugby fans tend to enjoy the good life,’ Rauzan-Gassies owner Anne Francoise Quié told decanter.com, ‘and we hope they’ll enjoy some Bordeaux wine alongside the Guinness. Even though September is harvest month, and therefore very busy, we are happy to open our doors.’

Up to 50,000 spectators are expected.

The Rugby World Cup 2007 will take place between 7 September and 20 October, with matches in 10 locations throughout France, as well as in Edinburgh and Cardiff.

Written by Jane Anson