Marcillac, a frank and authentic wine from the South West
Although it covers barely 200 hectares, the Marcillac appellation is the largest in the Aveyron vineyards. In this department of the South-West, the AOCs often remain confidential. The Marcillac appellation is a solid leader. Located between Rodez and Conques, east of Cahors, this AOC spreads its vines over the sunny slopes of a natural amphitheatre. It produces red wines and a few rosés which all reflect the strong identity of the terroir and the region.
General presentation of Marcillac
The wines of this Aveyron appellation are produced around Marcillac-Vallon, in about ten communes of the Ady valley. In the north-east of the South-West vineyards, the AOC Marcillac is located in the foothills of the Massif Central, about twenty kilometres from Rodez.
The vineyard developed in the Middle Ages under the impetus of the Abbey of Conques. It has gone through different eras, marked by periods of great success and serious crises. In the 1960s, the winegrowers reclaimed the valley. The steep slopes were terraced and the local grape variety, Fer Servadou, was cultivated in order to improve the quality of the wine production. The latter, in red and rosé, has benefited since 1990 from the protection of an AOC, which recognises the work carried out by the wine growers.
The Marcillac vineyard has about 200 hectares of vines, 90% of which are planted with Fer Servadou, the emblematic grape variety of the South West. It is also sometimes called mansois. It is the majority variety in the red wines and the few rosés of the appellation; it can be complemented by the Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Prunelard varieties.
Characteristics of Marcillac
AOC Marcillac is a red wine of character, solid and tannic, which is often described as rustic. This local wine expresses all the authenticity of its grape variety, Fer Servadou, and of its production region. In red, its colour is dark with purple reflections. Its nose is fruity. We find in its aromatic palette small red and black fruits such as raspberry, blackcurrant, blueberry and blackberry. The whole blossoms on a background of spices, peppery notes, sometimes elderberry and cocoa.
The tannins, firm and powerful, become rounder with the years. A red Marcillac can be drunk young, but it can also be aged for 4-5 years. Some vintages can be kept for ten years.
The rosé wines of the AOC Marcillac are rare: barely 10% of the production. Their colour is deep and they also offer fruity notes as well as a nice freshness.
How to taste a Marcillac
A frank and typical local wine, red AOC Marcillac is at its best when accompanied by simple and generous local gastronomic specialities: aligot, tripous, charcuterie from Aveyron, meats from Aubrac... Regional cheeses are also part of the game: Bleu des Causses, Roquefort, Laguiole... A red Marcillac goes well with spicy food and small game, especially when it is aged. It is recommended to serve it at a temperature of 16°.
Served chilled, at around 8°, rosé marcillacs are perfect for sunny aperitifs; they accompany white meats and grilled meats.