Plateau du Cascal domain, Rouffiac, Aude, South of France, Occitanie
The estate is situated between the mediaeval city of Carcassonne and Limoux, the cradle of the Blanquette de Limoux, a sparkling white wine. An area of soft rolling hills with the Pyrenees at the background surrounded by the valleys of the river Aude with its source in the Pyrenees and its mouth in the Mediterranean Sea at Grau de Vendre near Narbonne. A region of Cathar castles both influenced by Mediterranean and Atlantic climates.
The vineyards are in the villages of Rouffian d’Aude and Preixan. They could be considered as AOC (Appellation of Origin Controlled) “Limoux and Malpère” but I have made a deliberate choice to have my wines as IGP (protected geographical indication) “Vin de France”. Not being labelled under AOC allows me to avoid constraints and to be free to produce my wines totally in my own personal way. The domain dates from 2014, when our family agricultural land group, the GFA « l’Aude Vie », purchased a wine farm of 24 ha, of which 12 ha vineyards, from a retired farmer. The vineyards are mostly quite old. One part of the grapes is sold to the cooperative Anne de Joyeuse in Limoux and 6 ha are transformed by myself in a private wine cellar generously made available to me by a retired wine farmer in Pomas. The vineyards in production for the private wine cellar have been in convertion to organic agriculture with ECOCERT since 2014. The agricultural equipment is financed through leasing and the wine cellar equipment is little by little being self-financed.
The wine farmer/producer
Originally from a family of farmers and winemakers in the Drôme and more specifically in Die, also the cradle of another sparkling white wine “La Clairette de Die”, it was obvious that I studied agriculture with specialisation in viticulture oenology. The followed two years in the Côtes du Rhône, two years in the Beaujolais and two years in Carcassonne where I founded a family of two children. My studies opened up the world of wines to me with so much diversity that a life time would not be sufficient to know all the secrets. I then worked in a lot of wine estates around Carcassonne: Château de Brau, Gaure Castle, Domaine de Loupia, Domaine de Denois… I then took a specialization in organic and biodynamic viticulture. All these experiences in the field of viticulture and wine making gently guided me towards this passion and the desire to make my own wine. Coming from a family oriented to organic farming, it could not be otherwise than that I became convinced that there are no other perspectives to respect man and the land: the living!
I am one of those winemakers who decided to go against the tide by creating a special wine farm on a small scale in organic cultivation. This tendency is at odds with the production methods of most cooperative wineries and large estates. It aims at quality and not quantity, thereby meeting the demand of a clientele looking for healthy and natural products.