LES VIGNERONS DU VALLON
PRODUCTEURS DE PLAIMONT
LES VIGNERONS DU VALLON
2015 AOC Marcillac Rouge "Les Burons" (Mansois)
Situated in the idyllic Marcillac Valley of the Aveyron region, Les Vignerons du Vallon is a local co-operative gathering together about forty farmers to produce 55% of the Marcillac appellation’s total wine.
Winemaking in the region declined steeply through the 19th–20th centuries, with a series of natural disasters including phyloxerra drastically reducing the number of viable vineyards. But the vines were gradually replanted, and the Marcillac appellation was granted AOC status in 1990, proving its quality and potential.
Marcillac is a petite, hilly area in the South-West of France, where predominantly the Mansois grape is grown. This rustic red varietal is also known as Fer Servadou and comprises 90% of all vine plantings in the region. It grows in an exceptional iron-rich clay soil on a limestone base, known locally as rougier, for which the area is recognised.
Plantings sit between 350 and 500 metres, and grapes continue to be picked traditionally, by hand. The region is unique in that it sits at the meeting point of three climatic zones—Continental, Oceanic, and Mediterranean. This melting pot of climates, combined with the altitude, wind, and soil, gives the Mansois its extraordinary characteristics and aromas.
Situated in South-West France, this co-operative’s vineyards stretch from the Pyrenean foothills to the undulating Gascony hillsides. Covering a medley of diverse terroirs, the Producteurs de Plaimont represents 98% of the Saint-Mont appellation, 48% of the Madiran and Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh appellations, and nearly half of Côtes-de-Gascogne.
In 1979, the three wine co-operatives of the communes Plaisance, Aignan, and Saint-Mont formed a single united vigneron entity for the Gers department. In 1999, these Plaimont Producteurs were then too joined by the co-operatives of Crouseilles (producing across the Madiran, Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh and Béarn AOCs) and Condom (Côtes-de-Gascogne and Condomois AOCs). Today, the group manages 5,000 hectares of vines, with the average property covering 6-7 hectares. Forty million bottles of wine are sold each year.
The co-operative is conscious of farming with the environment in mind in order to preserve their land and heritage for future generations. The Producteurs de Plaimont also places importance on supporting young winegrowers, aiding them with set-up and teaching them the meaning of solidarity and community.
It’s a rather hi-tech operation, with each stage of production rigorously recorded in an individual log book for every parcel of grapes. Technology is engaged to establish the optimal harvest date, measuring the likes of phenolic maturity, sugar density, and nitrogen assimilation. For the red wines, only French barrels made out of oak from Allier, the Vosges, or the forest of Fontainebleau are used.
The cooperative is also concerned with the fair payment for grapes and distribution of wealth throughout the group of participating cooperatives and to the winegrowers who support them.
DOMAINE COSSE MAISONNEUVE
2014 AOC Cahors Le Combal (Malbec)
2015 AOC Cahors La Fage (Malbec)
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