In the heart of the Cabardès

was born the Maison Ventenac

Maison Ventenac is a family affair. The vineyard was founded in 1973 by Alain Maurel and his father, and is today run by the third generation.

Stéphanie, the eldest of Alain Maurel’s three daughters, and her husband, Olivier Ramé, who both arrived in 2010 to take over the operation and refresh its image. With experience in winemaking and oenology in all four corners of the world, Olivier has managed to link the “old world”, inherited from his father-in-law’s expertise, with the “new world”.

Our Family Estate

OUR FAMILY ESTATE

In the heart of Cabardès appellation, the vineyard of 160 hectares (of which 30 hectares in renting) is leaned against the Montagne Noire and enjoys all year round the Languedoc sun and fresh Atlantic. On this unique terroir, at the crossroads of oceanic and Mediterranean winds, a veritable partition between diversity of terroirs, climatic typicity and control of assemblages is played out. The Cabardès appellation is the only Languedoc appellation with the obligation to assemble at least 40% of Atlantic grapes (Cabernet, Merlot) and 40% of Mediterranean varieties (Syrah, Grenache).

Maison Ventenac has committed to a sustainable agriculture approach certified by the leading organisation ‘TERRA VITIS’. However, building on a desire to take respect for the land even further, internal specifications require that no chemical inputs be used on our soils. The transition has been underway since 2015, and almost all of the estate is now weeded mechanically.

At the vineyard

Photo vignoble Maison Ventenac

The village of Ventenac-Cabardès and the surrounding region are famed for the distinctive nature of the limestone vein running through them. The vines – planted on hillsides around Maison Ventenac – benefit fully from this very special soil structure, formed 50 million years ago when this area was still beneath the Mediterranean. This white limestone, very chalky and brittle in appearance, gives our wines their mineral, saline and fresh character. Our work therefore consists of humbly preserving this extraordinary potential within our wines. Very little oak is used in the juice, mainly to fulfil the goal of authenticity.

Whilst the appellation enables us to increase the cultivation of various grape varieties such as Grenache, Syrah, Merlot, Malbec or even Cabernet Sauvignon, our preference is for Cabernet Franc. Elegant, rich, delicate and very consistent, it reaches its full potential on our sun-drenched limestone-clay hillsides. Vintage after vintage, Maison Ventenac endeavours to put it in the limelight. We also pay the same care and attention to all of our vineyards, regardless of whether they are classified: enjoying sufficient rainfall, they are planted at a high density (6500 vines per hectare) which enables the vine to regulate its own yield and achieve better grape concentration.

At the Cellar

Photo Chai Maison Ventenac

White and rosé wines are vinified in 300-hectolitre stainless steel vats. The processes are the same: harvesting at night to benefit from the cool night temperatures and prevent oxidation from being accelerated by the heat, separation of ‘free-run juice’ from ‘press juice’, gentle temperature-controlled fermentation at 17-18 degrees. Our juices are aromatic, lively, precise and fruit-driven to ensure maximum richness and freshness.

Red wines are primarily vinified in temperature-controlled concrete vats 80 to 250 hectolitres in size for thermal inertia. This also means that the wines can be matured in an isolated, non-oaked environment so as not to affect the aromatic expression of our juices. In fact, our wine are very rarely matured in oak, and when this is the case it is with great parsimony and sensitivity. Tuns, wooden casks, terra cotta urns, or concrete have replaced barrels. We only use oak to raise our Cabernets, never to add a taste. We don’t mask anything here!

Our Wines

Discover our wines

Maison Ventenac proposes original, unique wines, always remaining true to the same principle : respect for the grape and its organoleptic qualities. All our production benefits from the same focus on quality, from our Pays d’Oc PGI cuvées all the way up to our premium Cabardès PDO wines.

“I have always sought to offer consumers an original, accessible insight into Languedoc winemaking know-how, through precise, contemporary wines that reveal their fresh, fruity qualities to the full. Finely-sculpted, complex wines that are the genuine expression of the Cabardès terroir.” (Olivier Ramé)

Château Ventenac…

All Ventenac wines remain true to our philosophy, genuine showcase for our expertise with precision, elegance and the freshness of fruit.

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Les Dissidents

Resolutely militant, and just a little bit of an anarchist, our “Dissidents” and “Païens” ranges express what we believe to be the very soul of Maison Ventenac, without any form of constraint, cultivating our finest plots of land in the most natural way possible, classifying our soils in order to better define them, selecting and creating our wines as we see fit. Here, there is no make-up, just delicate blends concocted in jars of 150 or 500 litres, and in casks of 2,000 litres. These wines are uncompromising, chiselled, precise and direct. An uppercut – but the good sort! One that wakes you up and tells you that not everything is standardised and uniform, but can be unique.

Vins "Les Dissidents"

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Les Païens

Photo Péjugés Maison Ventenac

The “Dissidents” also went on to give birth to the “Pagans”. Why did we choose this name? In rejection of all forms of oenological or viticultural dogma. Far removed from the “Languedoc standards”, from “the usual way” or from “common practices”, these wines are the exception to the rule. Even by our own house’s particular standards! By daring to brave “prejudice”, we have gone against the original conception of white wine by ageing a Chardonnay in casks for a few months. The Grenache that is historically used in our rosés because deemed uninteresting in red, makes up 100% of our “Paria” cuvée. Less exclusive than the “Dissidents”, these wines were nevertheless crafted to the same standards and with the same sense of transgression. They are unyielding, and affirm the frank identity of our terroir and the love we feel for it. They excel in their freshness, juiciness and minerality. These are signature wines, flag-bearers of the knowledge and skill of Maison Ventenac, in a rather more extreme style than that of the Chateau.

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Le Domaine Maurel …

This more confidential range is produced in Moussoulens, near Ventenac-Cabardès. This vineyard is a real gem, with breath-taking views over the entire Pyrenees mountain range.

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LES COLLECTIONS
de l’esprit ventenac

As part of our development, we have patiently forged special relationships with neighbouring winemakers, who share our view of expertise and quality, and who enable us to use terroirs with complementary geographical features. The grapes are harvested and sorted by our team, and undergo the same technical and qualitative procedure as our own harvest.

Les collections

L’ESPRIT
DE VENTENAC

DISCOVER

NEWS
WHERE TO FIND US

OUR STORES

Art de Vie

Bacchuseum

Téléphone : 02 97 21 66 88

Brûlerie de Lilas

Téléphone : 01 43 62 88 91

Cave Busquets

Téléphone : 05 61 21 46 22

Cave de la Poste

Cave des Jacobins

Cave et Trouvailles

Téléphone : 06 03 29 78 55

Cave La Vie de Châteaux

Cave Marc et Sébastien

Cave Vins chez Moi

Téléphone : 05 62 08 46 36

Cave Vins sur Vins Millésimes Diffusion

Caves Dargent

Téléphone : 01 42 28 80 79

Caves Dargent

Téléphone : 01 40 45 09 10

Caves Dargent

Téléphone : 01 42 06 26 52

Caves Dargent

Téléphone : 01 43 64 59 92

Caves du Trégor

Conroy Vins & Spi

Dressel - Bacchus

Téléphone : 03 88 86 47 42

Henner Marchand de Vin

L'Etiquette

Le Casier à Bouteilles

Le Casier à Bouteilles

Le Casier à Bouteilles

Le Cellier

Téléphone : 03 89 75 70 14

Le Comptoir de Pessac

Les Caves de Mon Père

Les Chais St François

Les Chais St François

Les Chais St François

Les Vins Guy Jeunemaître

Les Vins Guy Jeunemaître

Les Vins Guy Jeunemaître

Les Vins Guy Jeunemaître

Maison Lemaître

Téléphone : 02 40 47 04 12
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CONTACT US

4 rue des Jardins
11610 Ventenac Cabardes, France
Tél. : +33 (0) 468 249 342

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