Le Terroir de tautavel

Some of the upper slopes of Tautavel have rare alluvial red clay soils which contain a high proportion of rolled stones like those to be found in Châteaneuf-du-Pape. These acid soils give exceptional intensity to the Mourvèdre grape.

The Terroir of Tautavel

How can one bring soil back to life? Don’t expect us to criticise our ancestors. Without getting rid of weeds, the hillside vineyards would have been uprooted: For the past 15 years, the Roussillon area already lost 15,000 hectares (37,066 acres) of old hillside Carignan…

Some winegrowers still fight; the Roussillon has the largest number of old vines in France, thanks to the courage of the older generation. They have been tending these «ribes» (terraces on steep slopes) all their lives. They planted, grafted, ploughed with horses and worked with the «bigo», the traditional two-pronged tool.

We try, whenever possible, to revitalise soils by introducing biologically active compost like horse manure, by careful plowing, by using products that treat nature as gently as possible. This can be quite easy on some plots; on others we just have to try harder…