Maury is an enclave within the larger Rivesaltes appellation, both being known for the production of Vins Doux Naturelles, sweet red or white wines made by the mutage method, whereby neutral grape spirit is added to the must to arrest fermentation, leaving varyingly high degrees of natural sugar dependent upon how advanced the fermentation is at the point at which mutage takes place. Traditionally the wines are then subjected to an oxidative maturation, whereby they are put in glass demijohns and left outside for a year, before being further matured for extended periods of up to 20 years in old oak barrels, giving deep white and mahogany red wines with a marked rancio character and wonderful complexity. However, a modern style has emerged whereby mutage is followed by a conventional maturation under reduced oxygen conditions, giving sweet vin doux that retain vibrancy and freshness, albeit at the cost of some complexity. Furthermore, most producers make a range of red and white table wines under the Cotes du Roussillon Villages or Vin de Pays banners, the former shortly to be replaced by the new Maury Sec label. There are relatively few independent growers here, the Caves Cooperatives being responsible for much of the output.
Robert Pouderoux’s family have been vignerons and winemakers in Maury since 1826. He and his wife Catherine are now responsible for some of the most exciting wines from this wild and harsh region, subject as it is to searing summer heat, and bitterly cold winds in the winter. Their 18 hectares are split between two parcels on a range of schistous and granite soils. Of the table wines, Latour de Gres comprises 50% Carignane planted in 1901, the balance made up of Grenache, Mourvedre and Syrah. The grapes are hand picked, undergo a traditional vinification and are aged in wood for around 1 year. There is no fining or filtration. The wine has a marked elegance which combines with richness, with red fruits (cherries) as well as blackcurrant, pepper, liquorice and leather, with some wild garrigue notes. The Terre Brun comes from the region’s famous black – brown schistes , and is made up of 70% Grenache with Syrah and Carignane. After traditional vinification the wines are aged for 14 months in oak barrels, and bottled without fining or filtration. The black-brown soils give the Grenache a very specific expression, with a deep violet/black colour, with garrigue (herbs, spices, pepper) and notes of vanilla, with richly ripe red and black fruits and liquorice on the palate, and a velvety opulence.
Of the sweet Vin Doux, the straight Maury millesime is an early bottled style, and offers aromatic dark cherries and cassis with leather and tobacco edges, sweet and firm on the palate, with an appealing balance of fruit, tannin, alcohol and residual sugar. The Hors d’Age is blend of 12 and 15 year old barrel-aged wines, browner in colour, with a nutty, liquoreaux nose, spicy, firm and sweet, with great complexity and length, whilst the Grande Reserve has 2 years in barrel followed by a year outside in glass demijohns before spending a further 3 years in cask. It is more oxidised, with toffee, baked fruit and leather, with great grip and texture. Sweet Maury is famously suited to dark chocolate and chocolate based desserts.
DOMAINE POUDEROUX Maury
|2017||MUSCAT DE RIVESALTES||14.95||13.50|
|NV||MAURY Grande Reserve – 6 years||23.95||22.00|
|NV||MAURY Hors D’Age – 15 years||33.95||32.00|