Jean-Luc Terrier and Christian Collovray are childhood friends from the village of Davayé in the Mâconnais. Not only did they go into business together as the owners of Domaine des Deux Roches, but they also married into the same family. In 1997, they branched out beyond the Mâcon to Limoux in the southwestern part of the Languedoc.
They bought a single estate on the 125 acre Château d’Antugnac, located 50 kilometers south of the Carcassonne in the foothills of the Pyrenées. There, at 300 meters elevation in the Haute Vallée de l’Aude (“Vallée d’Atacis”), lies the little village of Antugnac, in a high valley surrounded by steep clay-limestone slopes with exposure to the south, ideal for the vine.
The domaine’s vines are planted on slopes at 500 meters, on very meager, shallow clay-limestone soil. The angle of the slopes and the elevation allow the vines to be well-aired; and the elevation mitigates the Mediterranean climate, especially at night. As a nod to this high altitude terrain, in 2020 the domaine changed its name to Altugnac, which was also the historic name of the village of Antugnac in the 14th century.
The estate spans 100 hectares, including vineyards, woods and surrounding land. The vines are relatively old with an average of 30 years and the oldest are over 50 years old. Due to the age of the vines and spacing of the plants, the yields are extremely low (often less than half the authorized yield for Vin de Pays). For their commitment to environmentally respectful practices, the estate obtained the HVE certification in 2017.
The Limoux terroirs are pleasantly revealed under the passionate management of the Collovray & Terrier duo, who are today joined by their sons Julien Collovray and Pierre-Alexis Terrier. The wines are fresh, charming, and true to their varietal character while consistently lacking the heaviness sometimes found in warm climate wines.