Domaine la Tour Vieille is run by a formidable duo Christine Campedieu (commerce and comptabilitié) and Vincent Cantié (viticulture and wine making). Their vineyards, which lie on precipitous slopes overlooking the Mediterranean, just above the Spanish border, encompass 15 hectares of Collioure and Banyuls and furnish a terrific range of dry and sweet wines that evoke a strong sense of their extraordinary terroir. A long ripening season, plentiful sunshine and excellent drainage and exposure provide ideal conditions for cultivating grapes and the feisty Tramontane wind keeps the vines pest-free and ensures that yields are naturally low.
Since 2003 the Institut National des Appellations d'Origine has officially sanctioned the production of white Collioure, of which La Tour Vieilles 'Les Canadells' is an outstanding example. It is made from a blend of 30% Vermentino, 20% Grenache Gris, 20% Grenache Blanc, 20% Macabeau and 10% Roussanne raised on their lees in barrel and vat and has a distinctive sherry-like bouquet and persistent, herb-infused, minerally, dry palate. It is a great food wine and makes a terrific foil for flavoursome Catalonian cuisine rich in seafood, peppers, herbs and spices.
The domain is renowned for its full-bodied, uncompromising red wine. The Collioure 'La Pinède' is a deep, dark blend of 75% Grenache Noir and 25% Carignan from mature root-stock. It has a briary bouquet with appealing wild herb notes and a warming, sun-kissed palate of garrigue berries and spices over earthy tannins. It is a great gastronomic wine; an olive rich daube or gigot d'agneau studded with rosemary and garlic would be ideal.