Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

Corbières, quantitatively significant appellation in the Languedoc region of southern France producing some excitingly dense, herby red wines, a small amount of rosé, and a little increasingly well-made white wine from just over 10,000 ha/25,000 acres of vineyard in 2012. The terrain here in the Pyrenean foothills (see map under languedoc) is extremely varied, and so hilly that it is difficult to generalize about soil types and topography. In recognition of this, the appellation was in the 1990s subdivided into 11 so-called terroirs, although not without a certain amount of local dissent. The basic distinctions in this southernmost corner of the Aude département are between coastal zones influenced by the Mediterranean, the northern strip on the Montagne d’Alaric (some of which has more in common with minervois), the westernmost vineyards, which are cooled both by Atlantic influence and by their elevation, and the rugged, mountainous terrain in the south and centre in which the fitou appellation forms two enclaves.