This is the story of a vineyard that had always been devoted to the production of Armagnac and that 40 years ago, had the courage to diversify its production and so the conversion started. Restructuration of the vineyard, control of the yields, and significant investment in the cellars, notably in terms of the low temperature fermentation, with the goalto improve the quality of wines and conquer the world.
1974 marked the birth of the name « Vin de pays des Côtes de Gascogne » which applies to the Gers department. It was in2004that the production zone was extended to the whole of the Armagnac area.
In 1982, the work of restructuring the vineyard and the evolution in the cellars was recognised, as the wines obtained the approval as «Vin de Pays Côtes de Gascogne ». A specific decree then fixed the production conditions throughout the Gers department.
Since 1st August 2009, Côtes de Gascogne has been recognised and registered as a « Protected Geographical Indication ». Their production conditions are now defined in a bill of specifications
It did not take much time for the Côtes de Gascogne wines to carve out a considerable part of the international market of white wines. Mostly in northern Europe (Germany, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Belgium…), where Gascony enjoys great recognition for its freshness and glorious fruitiness.
This success was built-up by the independent winemakers, in their cellars and with their alliances. A few leaders, indispensible to the development of the sector, therefore favoured opening up to the markets.
Today, the Côtes de Gascogne is ranked
one of the most exported French white wines around the world.
The identity and the style of the Côtes de Gascogne took shape as blended wines of at least 2 varieties with the Colombard as the dominant one. The whites are lively, fruity and light.
In the 1990s, the first Sauvignon appeared in the Gascon vineyard in order to respond to international demand. They also brought complexity to the wines A few years later, the Manseng also became an integral part of the production to bring roundness and fat to the wines. They also allowed for the production of sweet wines that were a great success.
By relying on its traditional varieties at the head of which are the indispensable Colombard and Gros Manseng, the Côtes de Gascogne continue their journey where the rules do not vary: a constant improvement of quality and an ever more sophisticated technique in the constant quest for the crisp taste of fresh grapes, as is the signature of Gascony !
« We have one of the best selling wines in the world »
exclaim Jean-Pierre Drieux and Olivier Dabadie the Co-Presidents of the syndicate.
Indeed, the commercial success of the Côtes de Gascogne linked to a development strategy for exports has revealed more interesting prospects, in the historic European markets but also in third countries (Canada, USA, Japan) and the French market that is growing.
All the players; winemakers, oenologists, marketers, wine merchants, restaurateurs, share the same enthusiasm for these wines made between the Pyrenees and the Garonne. All rejoice in living such an exciting adventure, with passion as a common thread.