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Le Domaine d'Arton

Domaine d'Arton
Lectoure, Midi-Pyrénées, 32700
France

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Vignes / Vineyard

Longtemps, les côtes-de-gascogne furent déclarées "vin de pays", autrement dit reléguées en deuxième division. Blancs secs, blancs moelleux, rosés et rouges, ils affirmaient leur région sans honte mais pas sans talent. Depuis 2009, ils sont IGP, "Indication Géographique Protégée" en langue bruxelloise. Cette entité couvre près de 12 000 hectares soit le même terroir et le même territoire que l'Armagnac. Dans cet ensemble gigantesque, le récent vignoble du Domaine d'Arton ne représente qu'une trentaine d'hectares, 2/3 en blanc et 1/3 en rouge. Des parcelles qui regardent le sud et le soleil à l'exception de deux vignes orientées au sud-est.
Comme sur une grande partie du vignoble français, les sols sont argilo-calcaires. Le plateau de Lectoure signe le caractère des sols avec une nature calcaire affirmée, des calcaires filtrant et frais baptisés « peyrusquet » qui conviennent à l'élaboration des vins mais aussi de l'armagnac. Pour autant, les terroirs ne sont pas uniformes, une balade dans le vignoble permet d'apercevoir des terres carrément blanches et d'autres qui tirent vers l'ocre et le fauve.

The Côtes de Gascogne wine was described for a very long time as a 'vin de pays'. If we look closely at the subtext we see that this meant - relegated to the second division. Dry white wine, sweet white wine, rosés and reds. It seems they were all considered to have the same typical honest and unashamed characteristics associated with this region. There was the drawback however, that they apparently lacked a certain talent. But today we can announce with considerable pride that in 2009, these same wines were awarded the GPI (geographical protected indication) label -a certificate created by the European Union in Brussels. This label covers an area of almost 12,000 hectares which also includes the same land and the same territory where Armagnac is produced. When the de Montal family bought this property, not a single vine stood on the land. All the vines that you see when you approach the property today were planted by Patrick de Montal. The vineyards stretch out over 40 hectares, which may seem a tiny proportion of the enormous territory covered by the GPI distinction, but it is a major achievement. Two thirds of these vineyards produce white wine and one third produces red. The land is made up of a majority of plots on typically clay and limestone soil that face south and benefit from all the full, rich nourishment of the sun and two plots of vines that face the south-east. The plateau from which the town of Lectoure emerges is also characterised by a very strong presence of limestone. This is what is called 'porous limestone'. It is cool and also goes under the name of 'peyrusquet' (pocket of limestone rock), the ideal ground on which to grow vines and also for the production of Armagnac. However, an interesting feature of the soil here is that there is no certitude about what one will find. As you wander through the vineyards you will see patches of land that are totally white due to the limestone content and other patches that glow in more ochre and tawny colours that are suggestive of clay.