The stems are removed and the grapes are crushed before being placed in the cuves where they shall macerate for 20 days. The fermentation step lasts approximately 14 days and is done under temperature control (always under 28°). Maceration on the lees lasts for up to 5 weeks for the Carignan and the Shiraz. The cap which forms on the top of the cuve is punched with the juice which is taken from underneath to do so.
This helps extract the best of the grapes without spoiling the softness of the tannins. The malolactic fermentation is done in the cuves or in oak barrels, depending on the grape variety. The final blending is done with the wines aged in cuves and the wines which have spent 12-16 months ageing in oak barrels.
Lovely intense deep garnet red in colour. The nose opens with very ripe small red and black fruits evolving to more complex menthol and peppery notes. Full bodied and harmonious palate with good fruit characters.
Wine & Food pairing: duck breast with honey and spices, Indian marinated beans, cheeses with a flowery rind: Camembert de Normandie.
The climate here is Mediterranean-dominant with Atlantic influences in the western part (Clamoux and Côtes Noires). Winters can be quite harsh on the limestone plateau located 300 m above sea level.
A series of terraces home to pebbles, sandstone, schist or limestone. The terraces alternate with areas of limestone marl and sandstone. To the north-west, near Caunes-Minervois, veins of schist and pink marble are a distinctive feature of the landscape. The high altitude area is formed of limestone plateaux.