St-Chinian – muddy waters


To assess the drainage properties of vineyard soil, visit on the only day in the year when the region issues flood warnings.

That was the positive spin on the torrential rain that lashed our first two days in St-Chinian, while everyone kept assuring us that they ‘never get this weather in St-Chinian’.

And to be fair, it was quite clear that the vines ankle deep in water were, generally, squatting on the Vin de Pays map. The vineyards that looked less like rice paddies were, more often than not, the rugged steeper vineyards of the AOC. It’s on days like...