This is a co-operative run region, 75% of all proudction is produced by co-ops 


A co-operative is made up of member and in this case the vineyard owners are the member!

They deliver grapes to the cooperative, which is involved in production of wine from the grapes and the subsequent marketing activities.


Roussillon was it own individual region up until 1972.


In 1972 Languedoc and Rousillon became a joint region


Rousillon is an extremely moutainous region


Roussillon has the highest number of biodynamic and organic wine producers in all of France!



600 BC 

Anicent Greeks introduced the vine after planted it in The Languedoc region. 


13th - 18th Century 

Spanish ruled Rousillon for 500 years 

They planted the region with native spanish grapes 


Mataro/ Monastrell - Mourvedre 

Macabao - Maccabeau 

Lladoner Pelut 

Carinena - Carignan



3 areas recieved AOC status 


  • Rivesaltes

  • Banyuls 

  • Maury 



Muscat de Rivesaltes 



Banyuls Grand Cru 


All the AOC's above were for the follwoing style of wine 


Vin Doux Naturels - Red and White versions, 


Today Roussillon produces 80% of all French VDN



First dry wine AOC 

Collioure AOC - at the time it was only for red wine 



13 AOCs 


Rousillon was a late bloomer in terms of wine-making 

- was on the last regions to begin temperature-controlled fermentation 

-New oak barrels are deemed quite luxurious 





Roussillon is highlight on the map in Red 


East - Mediterranean Sea 


South - The Pyrenees and Spain 


North - Languedoc Region






325 sunshine days per year, making it one of France sunniest Regions 


The region is effectivley lying in a rain-shaodw due to the follwoing 


Pyrenees and its foothills border Roussillon, the mountains block the west winds 


Roussillon has the highest mean temperautre in all of France however Northern parts of the region can be quite windy. 


The Tramontane winds, similar to the Mistral which is experienced in The Rhone Valley and Provence. 


Tramontane winds removes moisture from the berries which increases sugar concentration and reduces yields. 


The winds drys the soils and controls humidty. 


The controlled humidity helps to reduce the risk of disease. 







Soil - Iron-rich, sandy, red clay (main soil type)


The soil is great at retaining water, perfect for Roussillons dry climate 


Other soils found in the region 


Limestone, black schist, granite, gray schist, galets, sandstone, gnesis, shale, quartz, yellow clay, sand and marble 


Note to remember 


Alluvial plains - white grapes 


Higher elevated stonier sites - red grapes 


Roussillon is a very moutainous region


North- Corbieres Mountains 


West- Canigou, highest peak of the Pyrenees over 2,785meters 


South- Roc de France which borders Spain, 1450meters 


The region is surrounded by 3 large mountains


How does this effect the climate? 


  • Mountains trap the heat

  • Vines planted on or near the mountains, high dirunal swings because cold air moves down from the mountains when the sun settles


3 Rivers 


  • Agly

  • Tete

  • Tech 


All 3 rivers flow out to the Mediterranean, the river helps to control the temperture of the vineyards around them.






Grape varieties

White grapes 

Grenache Blanc

Grenache Gris



Chenin Blanc



Piquepoul Blanc

Rolle (Vermentino)



Muscat a Petits Grains Blanc 


Muscat d Alexandria 

Tourbat (Malvoisie du Roussillon)


Red grapes


Grenache Noir






Cabernet Sauvignon

Cabernet Franc



Pinot Noir 




Regional AOCs


Languedoc AOC

remember grapes can come from Languedoc and Roussillon 


Cotes du Roussillon AOC

Largest AOC in the region

Received status 1977

Produces 80% Red 13% Rose 7% White

Grapes allowed within this AOC




Grenache Noir









Grenache Blanc

Grenache Gris




Tourbat (Malvoisie du Roussillon),

Rolle (Vermentino) 


1 Cru - Cotes du Roussillon Les Aspres 

Must be a blend of atleast 3 of the following grapes


Carignan Noir Grenache Noir Syrah Mourvèdre 



Cotes du Roussillon Villages AOC 


Received status in 1977

Produces Red wine

Grape varieties

  • Grenache

  • Carignan

  • Lladoner Pelut

  • Syrah 

  • Mourvèdre 


Usually Grenache based Wine

must be a blend

No variety in the blend can exceed 70% 

The vineyards are located in the valleys of the rivers mentioned earlier





Within the Cotes du Roussillon Village appellation there are 4 village "Crus" that can append their name to the label 


  • Caramany

  • Latour de France

  • Lesquerde 

  • Tautavel 


All 4 Crus are located around the village Maury 

The blending formula is the same as Cotes du Roussillon AOC except Cotes du Roussillon Village Caramany


Cotes du Roussillon Village Caramany min 25% Syrah  NO Mourvedre

Carignan must be vinifed using Carbonic Maceration 


Cotes du Roussillon Village Lesquerde 

Carignan must be vinified using Carbonic Maceration NO Mourvèdre 


Cotes du Roussillon Villages - Tautavel

min 20% Grenache and Lladoner Pelut

either together or separately max 50% Carignan 

min of 50% of the Carignan must be vinifed using Carbonic Maceration

Aging - min 1 year 



Collioure AOC

Received status 1971 for Red  1991 for Rose 2003 for White

Most Southern Appellation in all of a France

Grapes Varieties



Grenache Noir






Grenache Blanc

Grenache Gris



Maury AOC 

Received status 2012 for Dry red wine Produces Red 

Grapes varieties

60-80% Grenache Noir





Maury AOC – can produce Vin doux Naturels as well 
MUST be a minimum blended wine 
Aging – minimum 6 months 
The word “SEC” will also appear on the label 
Vin Doux Naturels (VDN) AOCs 
Sweet,Fortified wines
Min 15% alcohol 
Residual sugar less than 5% and up to 10% 
Leagally grapes have to picked with a 25.2% sugar level at harvest 
  • Pure alcohol is added to the must  at 5-10% volume. 
  • The addition of spirit kills the yeast and raises alcohol levels. 
  • The added spirit stops fermentation leaving unfermented sugar in the wine (residual sugar)
  • R.S levels vary depending on when the spirit is added. 
VDN can be produced in 2 different ways 
1. Reductively, the holding vessel where the wine is (tank/barrel) is continously topped up to the very top so no air space is present. 
Style- Fruit forward and fresh 
2. Oxidising, encouraging oxidation. The holding vessel are not topped up to allow space for oxygen. If winemakers would like to speed up the oxgyen the VDN is placed in glass bottles under the sun.
5 VDN appellations in the Roussillon region 
Banyuls Grand Cru AOC – red 
Banyuls AOC – red, rose and white 
Maury AOC – red and white 
Rivesaltes AOC – red and white 
Muscat de Rivesaltes AOC  white – Muscat a Petit Grains and Muscat Alexandrie- min R.S level of 10%
If Muscat does not appear on the VDN label Grapes used are 
  • Grenache Blanc
  • Malvoisie du Roussillon
  • Maccabeu
Flavour profile honey, dried fruits, orange zest 
Rivesaltes AOC -VDN
Grenache Blanc, Malvoisie du Roussillon, Maccabeu
Max - 20% Muscat a Petit Grains and Muscat d'Alexandrie 
Rivesaltes AOC Red production labelling terms
if produced reductively - Grenat
if oxidised - Tuile
if extremely oxidised - Rancio 
Rivesaltes AOC White production labelling terms 
if oxidised - Ambre 
if extremely oxidised - Rancio 
Muscat de Rivesaltes AOC - VDN 
is NOT made in the oxidised manner of other appellations 
Maury AOC - VDN
Grenache Blanc, Malvoisie du Roussillon, Maccabeu
Max - 20% Muscat a Petit Grains and Muscat d'Alexandrie 
Rivesaltes AOC Red production labelling terms
if produced reductively - Vendange or Recolte
if oxidised - Tuile
if extremely oxidised - Rancio 
Rivesaltes AOC White production labelling terms 
if oxidised - Ambre (very uncommon)
if extremely oxidised - Rancio 
Banylus Grand Cru AOC - VDN
min 75% Grenache Noir
blending partners Carignan, Cinsault, Syrah
Aging - 30 months in Oak 
Style - slightly oxidised 
Label - dry, sweet, brut - (if R.S level is under 5%)
if oxidised - Tuile 
if extremely oxidised - Rancio
Can NOT be made reductively 
Banyuls AOC - VDN
Grenache Blanc, Malvoisie du Roussillon, Maccabeu
Max - 10% Muscat a Petit Grains and Muscat d'Alexandrie 
Banylus AOC Red production labelling terms 
if produced reductively - Rimage 
if oxidised - Tuile 
if extremely oxidised - Rancio 
Banylus AOC White production labelling terms 
if oxidised - Ambre 
if extremely oxidised - Rancio 
Styles of VDN 
Ambre - Amber-coloured 
Tuile - Terracotta coloured 
Rancio - Brown coloured 
Flavour profile - walnut, orange. The flavours increase with oxidiation
IGP  Indication Geographique Protegee 
  • IGP Pays d'Oc (most wine is labelled under this IGP)
  • IGP Pyrenees Orientales 
  • IGP Cotes Catalanes
  • IGP Catalan 

Aging VDN in glass bottles under the sun allowing the wine to oxidise. There is a large space between the VDN and the top of the bottle for oxgyen contact

  • Black Instagram Icon
Follow Me