Domaine Cabirau Maury Sec Serge and Nicolas 2012
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
A northern point in France’s far southern Roussillon region, Maury is dominated by steep limestone cliffs and the castle of Queribus, which the French used as a defense outpost against the Spanish until 1659. Today it remains an important symbol of the presence of both cultures in the region.
Though Maury is famous for vins doux naturels (a style of fortified wine), Maury dry red wines are quickly becoming more in vogue and received their own appellation designation in 2011, called Maury Sec. As is the case in most of Roussillon, Grenache plays a key role here. The region’s schist-dominant vineyards, which climb up to 1,300 feet, are excellent for the production of Grenache of all styles.
For Maury dry red wines, Carignan, Mourvèdre and Syrah act as blending partners with Granche Noir. In the production of vins doux naturels, Grenache Gris and Blanc play a subsidiary role. The latter are characterized using the same terminology as that in Riveslates with those named as grenat or tuilé based on Grenache Noir and those described as ambré or blanc containing more Grenache Blanc and Grenache Gris.
With bold fruit flavors and accents of sweet spice, Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre form the base of the classic Rhône Red Blend, while Carignan, Cinsault and Counoise often come in to play. Though they originated from France’s southern Rhône Valley, with some creative interpretation, Rhône blends have also become popular in other countries. Somm Secret—Putting their own local spin on the Rhône Red Blend, those from Priorat often include Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah make an appearance.