In the rugged hills north of Carcassonne, on the southern flank of the Montagne Noire which separates Languedoc from the Massif Central, the Mediterranean & Atlantic climates mingle to form a unique terroir, rich with biodiversity, where Grenache, Syrah, and Cabernet Franc can grow together. Scrub oak (garrigue) rubs shoulders with pines, olive trees, almond trees and wild thyme.
Domaine de Cabrol’s vines (20 hectares out of the 150 hectares property) are spread out on hillsides and natural clay-limestone terraces at an altitude of 1150 feet, atop rock full of fossilized sea creatures from 90 million years ago. Recognizing the magic of this land, Nic Carayol’s dad, Claude, succeeded in creating the Cabardès appellation in 1999, advocating for its unique terroir. Since 2021, Nic has continued his family legacy honoring the proximity to nature (vines are irregularly planted between rocky outcroppings), minimization of inputs, precise vinification, and expression of the terroir. Through the Carayols’ leadership, Cabardès has become an appellation to discover.
Farming/vinification practices: Organic. The high elevation vineyards allow for a very long growing season. Nic harvests much later than his down-the-hill neighbors, mid to late October.