Since we start with a perfectly clean basis, we can take our time to smoothly extract both taste and coulour. No over-extraction or ‘forcing’ of the grapes, but long cuvages of about five weeks. We favour complete delestages in the first period of fermentation, than go for daily pigeages by hand with special sticks we ordered in Burgundy. All this, to let the fruit completely express itself without creating any hint of green tannins.
Part of the wine (all Syrah for La Diva and 50% of the white Grenache) is aged in barrel. With the royalties of my book I offered myself the barrels I always dreamed of: contenance 500 litters, finest quality French oak, 1500€ a piece which ofcourse is not very realistic for Languedoc. But improving quality in an incredible way – just adding a hint of complexity without any predominance of wood.
In general, Mas des Dames wines are made to last. For La Diva, we just acquired a new concrete tank made by Nomblot. After aging a year in barrel we make the blend, than at least one and half year more in concrete before entering the market.
To answer demand of the market, the white and rosé are bottled the year after harvest. This said, the white does do very well with aging.