On the steep scree-covered slopes of calcareous limestone, pockets of clay are flecked with particles of calcium broken up by frost. The soils are very basic and produce dense and structured wines, able to age indefinitely.
The Terroir of Vingrau
Terroir has become a trendy word. Especially «great terroir». Who doesn’t have one, or claim to have one? At Clos des Fées, our decision to work in this abandoned corner of the Agly valley is, above all, due to a geological map.
This large colourful map may essentially be a geologist’s paradise, but for us, it made us realise how fantastically diversified the geology of this part of the world is. One can only find such diversity in Alsace and… Madagascar! The wide range of rocks and soil types are complemented by a variety of exposures. Some north facing slopes called the «bacs» (bottom of the slopes) barely see a few hours sun in winter. Others facing due south could have tropical plants if it wasn’t for the droughts, sometimes severe. In this area, just barely a few kilometres, one climbs over 350 metres (1150 ft). In these terroirs, harvest never begins before October 15th. Did you say «Mediterranean» climate?