The Abbaye de Fontfroide

At the heart of an amazing landscape protected by the Corbières rolling hills the wines of Fontfroide carry the secrets of a 1000 years of history . The vineyard was created around this jewel of Roman architecture, the cistercien Abbey located in Cathar land. Initially vinified to provide each monk with the daily ration recommended by the rule of Saint Benedict, the wines gradually became imbued with the values of the men who produced them.
To discover the range of wines of the Abbey of Fontfroide is to enter a preserved terroir of plains and fragrant scrubland, it is to meditate in the galleries of the cloister where the chirping of birds enchants the silence, it is to give thanks to the inspiration as the Fontfroidiens artists did for a time, and is finally approaching a form of universal absolute in bliss.


In 479, Sidoine Apollinaire, after a stay in the magnificent Octavienne Villa, near Fontfroide, evokes “its fields and its waters, its vineyard and its olive groves”, testimony of the ancient implantation of the vineyard, during the founding of “ Narbo Martius ”(Narbonne) in 118 BC.

The vineyards of Languedoc, developed by veterans of the Roman legions who received land in the Narbonne area, competed strongly with those of Italy, to the point that the Roman administration legislated to protect the interests of its own winegrowers.


A Cistercian icon, the Abbey of Fontfroide has been operating in its many « barns » (farms) vineyards in the heart of the Corbières since the 12th century, then participating in the revival of Narbonne viticulture, dormant since the end of the Pax Romana.

Wine is necessary for the celebration of the Eucharist and it is authorized by the rule of Saint Benedict, which fixes an individual consumption limit, specifies that abstention remains … preferable (wine even makes the wise « apostate ») but immediately adds that the Father Abbot can have more distributed « if the conditions require it »! Therefore the Cistercians were, as in Clos Vougeot, great wine growers.

In the 14th century, the wine of Fontfroide, a sweet wine (mutated with alcohol) which can travel, probably based on white and black Grenache grape varieties, is served in Avignon on the table of the Popes, including that of Benoît XII, former Father Abbot of Fontfroide.


In the 19th century, the reinstated Cistercian community produced in Saint-Julien de Septime, the oldest and closest “Cistercian barn” of Fontfroide, high quality mass wine and red wines. Wine that she exchanges with other abbeys like Hautecombe. This red wine is also sold everywhere in France via the Narbonne “place of negotiation”.

The last monks left Fontfroide in 1901 but the imprint of their work remains alive at the bend of each plot of vines whose name, orientation, and outlines drawn by stone walls have not changed for centuries.


(Managing Director)
Great-granddaughter of Madeleine and Gustave Fayet, purchasers of the abbey in 1908.
Lawyer, PHD in business law and Nationak degree in viticulture.
Laure worked 11 years in a business law firm .
She has been both manager of the Estate since 2004 and Operational Director of the Abbey.

Degree in viticulture.
From a family of winegrowers, Damien is also a winegrower in Corbières.
Although the last to arrive in the team, an inveterate hunter, he already knows everything about the Fontfroide Massif. He brings the energy of his youth to running the vineyard

Degree in viticulture.
In charge of the cellar, vinification during the harvest, aging of wines, bottling and monitoring stocks and shipments.
Brings his energy and skills to the development of wines.

Sales and marketing degree in wine industry.
In charge of developing the restaurant and wine mercants customers in Occitanie and monitoring sales agents in France.
Brings his sense of structure, its youth to the follow-up and loyalty of our customers.

In charge of the administrative and the accounting of the Domaine, she previously ran her own business. Her professionalism leaves nothing to chance in the administrative, accounting and commercial follow-up.

Our vineyard

The vineyard extends around the Abbey, replanted like a garden for visitors, like a precious casing for the buildings.


Bordered to the west and north by the Aude, to the south by the first foothills of the Pyrenees and to the east by the Mediterranean, the Corbières has 10 terroirs, subsets of a vast area that begins in Carcassonne and which ends at Leucate.

Oceanic influences fade as you move towards the Mediterranean, offering a wide range of microclimates, accentuated by a marked topography.


The Terroir of Fontfroide is part of a west-east furrow, on the foothills of the Fontfroide Massif, culminating at 256 meters and the last rampart before the Mediterranean.

The Fontfroide vineyard faces north-west, located on the edge of the scrubland where pines, cistus and heather reign supreme. Associated with a particularly tortured relief and in a windy zone, this orientation strongly attenuates the Mediterranean character of the climate and favors the shadow zones. In summer, the night freshness is accentuated as well as the day / night thermal contrast so important in the grape maturation process.


In this terroir of real freshness, the red and white grape varieties ripen more slowly, without summer sun peaks and with a rather late maturity date. The grape thus develops an exceptional aromatic maturity (phenolic maturity) which is found in our wines by intense fruity aromas, unusual in our appellation.

The non-stressful sandy clay soils, formed from the mother rock of pink sandstone (exploited for the construction of the abbey), allow the grape to be brought to its finest expression smoothly thanks to a sufficient water reserve, even in a dry year.


Languedoc-Roussillon wine region is located in the south part of France. This region borders Spain, and the Mediterranean Sea on one side and the French regions of Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur, Languedoc and Roussillon is the first wine region in France where Romans planted vineyards. It is also the largest vineyard in France producing increasingly qualitative wines benefiting from its dry and warm climate
Today this is the largest producing region of organic wines in France.

The diversity of grape varieties

This sunny region allows the production of many different grape varieties.

White grape varieties

  • Grenache Blanc
  • Marsanne
  • Roussanne
  • Vermentino
  • Picpoul
  • Clairette

Red grape varieties

  • Grenache
  • Syrah
  • Mourvedre
  • Carignan
  • Merlot

The main appellations

  • Languedoc
  • Corbières
  • Saint Chinian
  • Faugères
  • Minervois