Domaine des Quatre Pierres
Aragon is a small commune in the Aude department at the foothills of the Massif Central. The domaine is made up of two terroirs – clay and limestone on an ancient lake bed (Alveolina limestone), and hard limestone from Ventenac for the El Pépé cuvée. Both sites are 300 metres above sea level, in a green Mediterranean wilderness. The Languedoc is warm, but here it is considerably cooler thanks to the location being at the crossroads of the southerly and Atlantic winds – this allows the grapes to retain a certain freshness which makes the wines all the more appealing.
Winemaker Edouard Fortin began his winemaking career by studying oenology in Beaune. In 2000 he moved to the Aude, in Southern France, and spent 12 years working at Domaine Font-Juvenal, in Cabardès. In 2010 he purchased 4.5 hectares and began making his first wine in 2011. He farms organically, and the grapes are vinified naturally in the cellar. The only thing he adds is a small amount of SO2 just before bottling.
Incredibly, he lives in complete solitude right in the middle of his vineyards. He has no electricity – just solar and gas, as well as large tanks of water which he refills as required. With a deep passion for permaculture, he has the most incredible garden, which provides the majority of his food. This is back to basic living, and when visiting him there is a sense of peace and harmony – he is away from all the clatter and clutter of the modern world – it’s just him and his vines, and it is extraordinary and beautiful. Edouard is making truly unique wines from some incredible terroir, and offers a point of difference for any avid drinker.
In 2018 he lost almost all of his wines to flash floods – his entire underground cellar was devastated. And so as a necessity to survive, in 2019 he purchased some additional grapes from his friends and neighbours, and made some négoce wines – the vines were in their second year of conversion to organic farming.