Jewel of the Corbières
Château Montfin, unlike many vineyards, has not been handed down from father to son through the generations but we are passionate about wine and in love with nature. Indeed, the story of Chateau Montfin tells of this passion together with falling in love with a jewel of Corbière that is Peyriac de Mer. It was partly by luck that owners discovered this small village, but it was love at first sight for its narrow medieval streets and its square shaded by majestic plane trees.
A walk in the surrounding countryside characterized by limestone plateaus that descend all the way to the lagoons, and the scents of the garrigues that blend with spindrift as one approaches the lagoons. Those lagoons where sterns and flamingos bask in a halo of ever-changing light. Ever since Peyriac de Mer has been owners’ corner of paradise. The journey of Montfin began in September 2002.
The classification, grape varieties and terrain
In total the domain covers approximately 125 acres of which 50 are of vines. The rest is a mix of garrigue, almond, olive and truffle oak plantations providing a whole panoply of aromas. Grapes Carignan, Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre and Cinsault varieties constitute our red and rosé wines while our whites are a combination of Roussane, White Grenache and Vermentino.
Every few years, the owners have been planting twenty or so different types of plant in order to benefit from their root systems and the nutrients they bring, and to reinforce the biodiversity in the soil. Equally, planting hedges allows climatic excesses to be attenuated by regulating temperature differences.
The vineyard benefits from a Mediterranean climate of abundant sunshine and little rain which favours the slow cycles of the vine and insure the quality and regularity of the crop year on year. Another characteristic of is climate are the winds. The “Tramontane” bows across the vineyard nearly 200 days a year keeping the vine healthy during the growing cycle by limiting disease and aiding photosynthesis and, in summer, wind off the sea carries humidity limiting the hydrous stress of the vines.
On the hillsides overlooking the lagoons and the sea beyond, Chateau Montfin covers roughly 125 acres of stony clay soil swept by strong winds called the «Tramontane». The philosophy of Montfin is control the yield, embrace bio, work the land and harvest manually proving that it is altogether possible to work with precision while respecting nature. Always curious, rediscovering vines, land to replant, recently experimenting with making wine in amphoras and batches with no added sulphites.
The plots of vines at Chateau Montfin are divided into those with light coloured soil and those with red soil coloured by iron oxides. For us, each stage in the development of the vine has an impact on the quality of the wine. Consequently we work in close communion with the plant, we study it closely in order to constantly adaptour methods according to weather conditions and attacks that could endanger it.
Biodynamic cultivation principles are applied to the preparation of treatments (decoctions, liquid manure…) to protect the vines. We are equally attentive to the structure of the vine applying only a light physiological pruning accompanied by the removable of excess buds in springtime. The roots of the vines seek out water and nutrients deep in the soil. The vine absorbs all the elements in the soil transmitting them to the fruit.