The Domaine d'Aupilhac is in Montpeyroux, some 36 kms north-west of Montpellier. Our Cave, created in 1989 in our family home, is right in the heart of the village. We've been growing grapes for over 5 generations. A large part of our vines grow on south-west facing "terraces" on a site named "Aupilhac". They're mainly Mourvèdre and Carignan, but some Syrah, Grenache and Cinsault grow here... Read more
The Domaine d'Aupilhac is in Montpeyroux, some 36 kms north-west of Montpellier. Our Cave, created in 1989 in our family home, is right in the heart of the village. We've been growing grapes for over 5 generations. A large part of our vines grow on south-west facing "terraces" on a site named "Aupilhac". They're mainly Mourvèdre and Carignan, but some Syrah, Grenache and Cinsault grow here too. Another part of our vineyard is the north-west facing "Les Cocalières" at an altitude of some 350m (1150ft) where Syrah predominates, though Mourvèdre and Grenache grow here too. The most northerly facing part is planted with the four white grapes recognized by the Coteaux du Languedoc : Roussanne, Marsanne, white Grenache and Rolle (Vermentino). Finally, the "Plôs de Baumes" at Aniane, consists of terraces made up of gravel washed down by the Hérault river; it was owned by my maternal grand-father, Marcel Baumes, so is named in his memory. We plough the land regularly; this means the roots have to force their way deep into the cool sub-soil, thus protecting the vines from seasonal drought. We treat the land ("terroir") with great respect, our absolute priority being to maintain its natural balance. We harvest the grapes by hand. The skins must be properly mature if we are to extract the best aromas and colour, as well as ensuring silky tannins. On young vines we carry out a summer or green harvest to remove some bunches before they reach maturity; this stops the vines suffering from the heat and helps root development. The land's own yeasts ensure the grapes ferment naturally. The wines mature in casks and barrels in our underground cellar. We bottle the wines ourselves at the Domaine - unfiltered. We believe that work in the vineyards has far more influence on a wine's quality than what we do in the Cave. ~ History ~ My family has been producing wine for over five centuries, Three generations ago, at the end of the XIX century, my ancestors were producing wine at Aupilhac and sending it all over France. When I launched the Domaine d'Aupilhac as an independent vigneron in 1989, I was also cultivating melons, asparagus, tomatoes and peaches; but since 1992, I have concentrated exclusively on the vines. My father, Charles Fadat, an ornithologist particularly involved with woodcock preservation, enjoyed cultivating and developing the plants which belonged to my maternal and paternal grandparents.. Between 1989 and 1992, vinification took place in old bowsers parked in the open air and I bottled the wines before the following summer! In 1993 I built a covered cellar equipped with modern, efficient equipment. Then each year we acquired more land and planted new grapes which meant we were constantly expanding. 1997 saw the creation of large underground cellars to house the barrels and casks. In 1998 I decided to acquire some totally different land which had been cultivated two centuries earlier but long since abandoned. At an altitude of 350 metres, "les Cocalières", is a natural amphitheatre covered in wild garrigue. Two years later we built a bottling and storage unit. We are converting to entirely organic production with an Ecocert certificate. AND NOW : I've just leased 2,5 hectares (6,25 acres) of Cinsault, just below my "Cocalières" vines. They will be used in the Lou Maset wines, and possibly to help enhance the Montpeyroux vintage. We shan't use the grapes with the "Cocalières" wines. Follow this space... Read less
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