The appellation of Lirac is located 15 kilometers northwest of Avignon, on the right bank of the Rhône, in the Gard department. It extends over a Mediterranean territory, bathed in light and open to the mistral. The 750 hectares of the appellation extend over 4 communes: Lirac, Saint Genies de Comolas, Saint Laurent des Arbres and Roquemaure, cradle of the Côtes du Rhône. The three Cru Lirac terroirs have produced high-expression wines since ancient times.

Cru Lirac and the Côte du Rhône : Already a terroir story in the 16th century

Lirac wine Nature, like history, has placed the vineyards of Lirac among the high places of the Côtes du Rhône. In the 16th century, Lirac wines, appreciated for their quality and richness, were present on the tables of the great royal courts in France and abroad. These wines also received the honors of enlightened enthusiasts of the aristocracy and the high Parisian bourgeoisie. The village of Saint-Laurent-des-Arbres, located within the appellation area, still bears the traces of this sumptuous past : a former enclave of the diocese of Avignon, it housed a vineyard belonging to the bishops. Surrounding the village castle, easily recognizable with its pepper-pot turret, it produced enough wine to send across the river, as a tithe, “five ships of red wine, taken at the vat’s edge”.

The vine has been among the local resources for two millennia. Over the centuries, the port of Roquemaure became powerful and prosperous. From there, the wines of the Côte du Rhône were shipped to Paris, England, or Holland. In the 16th century, history accelerates: Lirac wines, already highly appreciated by the greats of this world, are present on the tables of the great royal courts in France and abroad. As early as 1737, to avoid the usurpation of the name, winemakers had the right to mark their barrels with the initials C.d.R. for “Côte du Rhône” to authenticate the wines. Thus, the Cru Lirac is at the origin of the Côte, which by extension designated all the wines of the Côtes du Rhône.

In 1904, Count Henri de Régis de Gatimel inherited the Château de Ségriès, still present today within the appellation. At that time, the estate derived its resources only from some cereals, silkworms, and a modest vineyard. In 1925, he decided to replant the vineyard as it existed in Roman times. In the following decade, he began a campaign to have the Lirac terroir classified as A.O.C. With success: on October 11, 1945, the appellation was judicially recognized by the Uzès Tribunal, and the AOC Lirac was defined by the decree of October 14, 1947. The new appellation became the first Cru of the Côtes du Rhône to produce wines of three colors: red, rosé, white.


The Cru Lirac arranges its vines on terraces and hillsides in four towns on the right bank of the Rhône, between scrubland, mistral and arid lands bathed in bright sunshine. This situation gives the wines part of their personality. The women and men of Lirac transcend through their practices the expression and typicality of the Lirac terroir.

1. Rolled Pebbles


They are mainly present in Lirac and Saint-Laurent-des-Arbres. They testify to a very ancient terrace deposited by the Rhône at the very beginning of the Quaternary. Its nature, found on the other side of the Rhône in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, is very typical. Long subjected to intense climatic variations, it is made up of quartzite pebbles (100% silica) from the heart of the Alps, rolled by the river and deposited over vast areas. These pebbles are associated with red sandy clays. This terroir produces powerful wines with a solid tannic structure and high aging potential. The reds are dominated by aromas of black fruits (black cherry, blackcurrant, blueberry), and spices.

2. Limestone Scree


To the west of the Lirac appellation area, the vineyard was planted on scree resulting from the erosion of limestone reliefs from the Cretaceous period, which cover the slopes and are particularly suitable for viticulture. This family of terroirs favors the production of wines marked by remarkable minerality and freshness.

3. Tertiary Sands


Fluvial sands from the Pliocene age (end of the Tertiary) fill the spaces between the limestone reliefs and often form the basis of the old Quaternary terrace (Saint-Geniès-de-Comolas, Saint-Laurent-des-Arbres). Subjected to erosion, this terrace was covered with pebbles and gravels on the sandy slopes of the hills. This combination (pebbles, gravels, and sand) produces very fine red wines, with an elegant tannic structure and a palette of aromas oriented towards red fruits.

The grape varieties

Grenache Noir

Taste and opulence

This great grape variety is the basis of southern red and rosé wines. It resists wind and drought well. Its aromatic potential and balanced tannins make it an essential grape variety for the production of red and rosé wines of the appellation. It produces rich and generous wines and also gives them a lot of finesse and harmony. It allows wines to have superb aromas of ripe black cherry, licorice, spices, dark fruits and cocoa.


Fruitful fragrance and a slight nervous tip

Syrah appreciates more difficult and less sheltered climates. It is a very expressive grape variety. It gives great aromatic richness: scent of red fruits, violet, leather, blackcurrant, blackberry, blueberry… It also provides very good coloring intensity and a beautiful tannic structure. Its tannins are dense but they also bring a nice finesse.


Tannic power, aging capacity

Very demanding in heat and light to ripen properly, it is more often planted on the edge of coastal areas and for Lirac, in warm inland areas. When blended with other grape varieties, it gives nice relief to traditional southern grape varieties (Grenache, Cinsault).
It gives evolved Lirac beautiful animal or undergrowth notes, truffle, very ripe fruit and liquorice as well as a powerful intensity.

Secondary grape varieties:


Grenache Blanc

Smoothness and length 

It is the great grape variety of Mediterranean vineyards subject to summer drought and the mistral. Like Grenache Noir for red wines, it produces white wines with a beautiful aromatic richness. They are quite full-bodied, not very acidic, round and length in the mouth.


Delicacy and a fruity taste

Originally from the South of France, this grape variety likes deep, clayey and stony soils. Clairette gives very fragrant wines, fruits and flowers, great finesse and immediate pleasure.


Elegance and aromatic complexity

This type of grape variety is very sensitive to diseases and finds its origins in the north of the Rhône Valley and is suitable for poor, stony soils, well exposed. It produces fine and elegant wines with a beautiful acid structure and great aromatic richness with notes of apricot, honey and hawthorn with subtle notes of coffee and narcissus. Endowed with a strong character, noble product of long-lasting wines.


Elegance and fruity taste

This grape variety is renowned for its finesse and elegance. Generally used in blends with Grenache and Syrah, it brings great aromatic richness (redcurrant, wild strawberry, pomegranate) and a beautiful creaminess to the blends. It is particularly suitable for rosé wines.

Secondary grape varieties:

Piquepoul blanc
Ugni blanc

Les cépages

Le Grenache Noir

Finesse et opulence

Ce grand cépage est la base des vins rouges et rosés méridionaux. Il résiste bien au vent et à la sécheresse. Son potentiel aromatique, ses tanins équilibrés en font un cépage essentiel pour l ‘élaboration de vins rouges et rosés de l’appellation. Il donne des vins riches et généreux et leur confère également beaucoup de finesse et d’harmonie. Il permet aux vins d’avoir de superbes arômes de cerise noire mûre, de réglisse, d’épices, de fruits noirs et de cacao.

La Syrah

Structure, nervosité, arômes

La Syrah apprécie les climats plus difficiles et moins abritées. C’est un cépage très expressif. Elle donne une grande richesse aromatique: parfum de fruits rouges, de violette, de cuir, de cassis, de mûre, de Myrtille … Elle apporte également une très bonne intensité colorante et une belle structure tannique. Ses tanins sont denses mais ils apportent aussi une belle finesse.

Le Mourvèdre

Puissance tannique, capacité de vieillissement

Très exigeant en chaleur et en lumière pour bien mûrir, il est plus souvent implanté en bordure de zones littorales et pour Lirac, dans les zones intérieures chaudes. En assemblage avec les autres cépages, il donne de jolis reliefs aux cépages traditionnels méridionaux (Grenache, Cinsault).
Il confère aux Lirac évolués de belles notes animales ou de sous-bois, de truffe, de fruits très mûrs et de réglisse ainsi que d’une intensité puissante.

Cépages secondaires :

Le Carignan

Le Grenache Blanc

Longueur et onctuosité

C’est le grand cépage des vignobles méditerranéens soumis à la sécheresse estivale et au mistral. À l’instar du grenache noir pour les vins rouges, il donne des vins blancs avec une belle richesse aromatique. Ils sont assez corsés, peu acides, ronds et longs en bouche.

La Clairette

Fruité et finesse

Originaire du Sud de la France, ce cépage aime les sols profonds, argileux et caillouteux. La Clairette donne des vins très parfumés, des fruits et des fleurs, une grande finesse et un plaisir immédiat.

La roussanne

Élégance et complexité aromatique

Ce type de cépage est très sensible aux maladies et trouve son origine dans le nord de la Vallée du Rhône et convient aux sols pauvres et pierreux, bien exposés. Il donne des vins fins et élégants sur une belle structure acide et une grande richesse aromatique avec des notes d’abricot, de miel et d’aubépine sur les notes subtiles de café et de narcisse. Doté d’un fort caractère, produit noble des vins de longue garde.

Le Cinsault

Élégance et fruité

Ce cépage est réputé pour sa finesse et son élégance. Généralement utilisé en assemblage avec le Grenache et la Syrah, il apporte aux assemblages une très grande richesse aromatique (groseille, fraise des bois, grenade) et une belle onctuosité. Il est particulièrement adapté aux vins rosés.

Cépages secondaires :

Le Marsanne
Le Viognier
Le Piquepoul blanc
L’Ugni blanc