The Region

Roussillon was incorporated into France as a province in 1659 and became the department of the Pyrenees-Orientales (prefecture Perpignan) in 1790. The sea and the mountains come together in this region … Roussillon is a small area with an extremely varied landscape and a sunny, hot climate that favours vine growing. Shaped like an amphitheatre, it is open to the Mediterranean Sea to the East and surrounded by three massifs: the Corbières to the North, the Pyrenees with the Mont Canigou to the West and the Albères to the South. Three rivers, the Agly, the Têt and the Tech, define the topography of the region. Between these rivers, each terroir has its own characteristics.

The wine-producing geography of Roussillon

The Pyrenees Orientales are ranked 9th among the French Departments in terms of production, which represents 2% of the national production in volume. They produce 80% of AOP certified French Vins Doux Naturels (fortified sweet wines). Roussillon produces dry still wines and Vins Doux Naturels (fortified sweet wines). With 14 AOP certified wines, stemming from 23 different grape varieties, and with its characteristic patchwork of terrains, Roussillon offers a diverse range of wines with distinctive qualities.

The AOP certified dry wines are:

  • Collioure (white, rosé, red)
  • Côtes du Roussillon (white, rosé, red), and Côtes du Roussillon les Aspres (red only)
  • Côtes du Roussillon Villages (red), from which stem 4 specific productions identified by the name of the town:
    • Côtes du Roussillon Villages Caramany
    • Côtes du Roussillon Villages Latour de France
    • Côtes du Roussillon Villages Lesquerde
    • Côtes du Roussillon Villages Tautavel
    • Maury Sec (red)

The AOP certified Vins Doux Naturels (fortified sweet wines) are:

  • Rivesaltes (Ambré, Tuilé, mention Hors d’Age and/or Rancio, Grenat, Rosé)
  • Maury (Ambré, Tuilé, mention Hors d’Age and/or Rancio, Blanc, Grenat)
  • Banyuls (Blanc, ambré, tuilé, mention Hors d’Age and/or Rancio, Rosé, Rimage)
  • Banyuls Grand Cru (tuilé)
  • Muscat de Rivesaltes (white)

The IGP (Protected Geochart Indication)

The IGP are classified either by zone, by grape varietal, or by department. 4 families can be listed:

  • IGP Côtes Catalanes
  • IGP wines of the Pays d’Oc
  • IGP Côte Vermeille