The Domaine des Aurelles is in the l’Hérault in the small village of Nizas, close to Pézenas, between Bézier and Montpellier. Since the founding of the domaine in 1995, and in spite of not being from the region, Caroline and Basile Saint-Germain have managed to produce some of the top wines of the Languedoc. The estate's vineyard covers 9 hectare, of which nearly 8 are red varietals: Grenache noir (39%), Carignan (34%), Mourvèdre (19%) and Syrah (8%), Roussanne is the only white grape in production. Located at only 30 km from the sea, the climate is Mediterranean, but tempered by the proximity of the Massif Central. The construction in 2001 of a modern and bioclimatic cellar (in massive stone), allowed the domain to improve the quality of its vinifications. Presently the wines benefit from the thermal resilience of the stone during their aging process, 22 months for «Aurel» white, and 44 months for the 2 flagship cuvées: «Aurel» and «Solen». The focus of the vineyard work is to limit yields, while preserving biodiversity without weeding or pesticides. Thanks to these low yields and a special attention to detail, Basile Saint-Germain produces superb wines, sold 5 to 6 years after the vintage to propose more « civilized » wines: drinkable, with subtle fruit, polished tannins and slowly settled by time. «Aurel» red is a blend of 85% Mourvèdre and 15% Grenache. The slightly wild side of Mourvèdre gives impetus to this southern wine, with iodine and garrigue accents, that should ideally be preserved and served at the correct temperature given its minimal dose of sulphur (lower than most biodynamic labels, which are already the lowest). «Solen», composed of 60% Carignan and 40% Grenache, is complex and long, and finishes with beautiful tightly grained tannins. It, however, requires a bit of keeping in order to enjoy it at its full potential. «Aurel» white is 100% Roussanne (rare for the region), of which 2000 to 3500 bottles are produced a year. It could be best compared to certain wines of the Northern Rhône valley, as it presents such a festival of flavors: brioche, toast, hazelnut, a rare breadth in the mouth and an oily and round honeyed finish. A true artisanal wine. The sincerity, brilliance and personality of the Domaine des Aurelles production will seduce lovers of great wines of the Languedoc. Highly recommended.