Meet the Winemaker
Vincent MAUREL has been the winemaker at Saint Hilaire for 18 years and has painstakingly built the Domaine's outstanding reputation producing exceptional quality wines.
What do you enjoy most about working at Saint Hilaire?
I enjoy every process of making the wine...from picking the grapes in September and October, to overseeing the fermentation, to bottling the finished wine. It's a constant yearly cycle that follows the seasons!
When it comes to the winemaking, do you have any particular feelings about how it should be made?
Wine is a natural product and my job as a winemaker is to produce a wine that best reflects the nature of its surroundings. This means minimal intervention, which means always keeping a careful eye on everything in the cave and regularly tasting of all the tanks and barrels to spot any problems straight away.
Tell us something we don't know about you?
I also love to go fishing in the Étang de Thau, and to play pétanque down by the Étang in Mèze. My sister is become a regional Pétanque champion, so I don't play with her anymore!
What is the wine you most feel proud about?
The Barrel select Grenache is, of all the wines I've made over the past decade, the one I've had most influence on. I decided to experiment with producing and ageing a pure Grenache, as I believe it's the grape that's best adapted to our very dry climate. I personally selected the best three barrels from the 2013 vintage that truly express the unique characteristics of this variety. There should be just about enough to produce 1000 bottles, but I'm not going to give too much else away! What I will say, is that I'm very proud of the results!
Like a fine pinot, the Barrel Select Grenache is spicey and lively enough to go with sea-food as well as heavier, more gamey dishes. Here's one of the seabass that Vincent caught from his secret spot on the Étang de Thau last summer. Anne's always happy when Vincent arrives in the morning bearing gifts...