Expats move to this area for all sorts of reasons. Many are chasing the sun, some are chasing an easier life, others are chasing the dream.
This month's wine article is about one such person who left the rain and her loved-ones behind her and moved toward the realisation of her dreams - to open her own vineyard.
Katie Jones is originally from Leicestershire but uprooted and moved to the Languedoc nearly 20 years ago to the picturesque village of Paziols in Aude. She worked for the local wine cooperative as their Export Sales and Marketing Director until she stumbled across a small vineyard in 2007 clinging to the side of the picturesque Maury Valley. She completely fell in love with it and a year later was the proud owner of 7 hectares set in the middle of nowhere. What did she do? She rolled up her sleeves and worked very hard, setting up Domaine Jones in 2009, and today is justifiably very proud ... and happy!
Katie ensures her wines capture the essence of the region and her 80 year old vines, growing on the black schist soils under the Queribus castle, produce, quite simply, Jones Rouge from Grenache noir, Jones Blanc from Grenache Gris and Jones Muscat from Muscat grapes. She also produces Jones Fitou from carignan, grenache and syrah selected from half a dozen vineyards around the village of Tuchan.
With some of the very latest winemaking equipment and innovative wine making techniques, together with help and advice from experts and locals alike, Katie's wines are rather special and have won awards, high accolades and international acclaim.
A visit to her innovative website will give you more information and a chance to read some of the press reviews. You are also very welcome to pop into Domaine Jones but just let Katie know in advance as she is often out in the vineyards.
"I discovered wines I will enjoy drinking for decades to come, and with each new vintage I buy I will remember the effort, tenacity and gusto involved in its creation. Put simply, Domaine Jones is a real pleasure to drink - from the plump, citrusy freshness of the Grenache Gris, to the soft juicy Grenache Noir, and even beyond: the Fitou is a marvel in structure, dark complexity and effortless drinkability." Laura Vickers - The Wine Society
rue du Vatican
Tel: + 33 686 679 468