Our family has made artisan wines for 3 generations in Domaine des Pradels. We are now growing in organic farming 16 hectares of vines, on schist slopes, with south south-east exposure. This stony arid terroir allows only low yieldings (20 to 40 hl/ha) and produces beautiful wines featuring concentration, elegance, freshness and silky tannins.
Our Domaine is located at 300 metres above sea level, perched on a sunny hill and protected from any outside pollution. The northern wind often blows here, refreshing the grapes at night and protecting them from humidity and illnesses. Our vines are planted on schist soils surrounded by evergreen oaks, strawberry trees, pines, a few chestnuts, heather, cistus, cade, juniper, thyme and other wild aromatic plants.
Our grapes and our wines enjoy all these perfect conditions to develop rich attractive bouquets.
Our varietals are Carignan noir (old vines), Grenache noir, Syrah, Mourvedre, Cinsault, Grenache blanc, Carignan blanc and Roussanne.
Sloping vineyards demand careful work by hand : pre-pruning, pruning, weeding, debudding, suckering, training, harvest.
The harvest : the totality of our harvest is manual, for a better respect of the vine trees and a limited soil compaction, a more careful selection of the grapes, and a more human and friendly work. The picking lasts for 3 to 4 weeks depending on the ripeness of the different varieties.
After the harvest comes the winemaking : we vinify all of our wines in our own cellar, red, white, rosé, AOP Saint Chinian and Vin de Pays.
The white and rosé wines are produced from the direct pressing of the non-fermented fresh grapes through a pneumatic stainless steel press, which is the modern automated machine offering the best qualitative results.
Once decanted and clarified, the grape juice starts its fermentation. We keep the temperature of the juice below 17°C in order to develop the fruitiness and roundness of the wines.
For the white wine and the rosé, the choice of the varietals blending takes place during the fermentation.
White wine: Grenache blanc, Roussanne
Rosés : Grenache noir, Cinsault, Syrah, Mourvedre
Our red wines come from our Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre and Carignan. Once picked, the grapes are destemmed then each grape variety is vinified separately in fermentation tanks. The temperatures are carefully watched and adjusted in order to develop fruitiness and smoothness. The juices remain in the tanks up to 1 month, depending on the varietal and the concentration we are looking for on each one of them.
After the vinification starts the wine maturation :
Our AOP Saint Chinian white and rosé are aged in tanks for 4 to 5 months before the bottling.
The AOP Saint Chinian reds are blended in order to create 5 to 8 Cuvées depending on the vintages.
Those Cuvées are matured in stainless steel tanks, foudres (5000-litre French oak casks), half-muids (French oak barrels) or stonewar jars from 3 to 12 month.
Finally the wines are bottled on our semi-automatic bottle-filling machine. The wines are left to age for 2 months to several years in our temperature-controlled underground cellar. The bottles are labelled and put into boxes when needed.
We hope this short presentation of what we artisan winemakers do day after day, year after year to offer you the best wines made with our hands and our hearts.
We try to combine as best we can quality, respect of Nature, ancestral know-how and modern equipment and techniques.
You understand that we grant a lot of care and our full attention to all the farming and winemaking tasks.
May our wines always bring you pleasure and be part of friendly moments.
Magali et Guilhem Quartironi