Part 8, in Selling Pleasure: the incredible success story of Provence rosé, with visits to some key producers

Minuty is an impressive operation. Run by two brothers, Jean-Etienne and François Matton (who we visited with, pictured below), it has been in the same family since 1930. They also have a vineyard in Vidaubon, about 45 minutes away, with its 45 hectares complementing the 80 hectares of vines at Minuty. The breakdown here is 80% rosé with 10% each of white and red. They find it difficult to sell the white and red on foreign markets.

Everything is hand harvested in order to preserve quality 'We don't want oxidation in our juice and we don't want to take colour,' says François. 'When you machine harvest you have juice coming out so you have juice and skin contact, and contact between the juice and oxygen.' This hand-harvesting is labour intensive, and he says he has had 80 Spanish people working for him for 15 days during the harvest.

As well as the 500 000 bottles of estate wine, Minuty also buys in grapes, with a total production of 5 million bottles. An Italian designer made their distinctive bottle shape, which they have exclusivity over.

'When I began 20 years ago,' says François, 'the English weren't interested in rosé at all. They didn't care. What has happened now is incredible for rosé, but it was hard and took a long time.' He adds, 'In the UK people didn't realize we could make elegant, good quality rosé.'

In particular, Majestic Wine have been a good customer. In the first summer he worked with them they ordered 30 000 bottles. In 2014 they asked for 100 000 but only got 75 000. In 2015 they have ordered 150 000, and would have liked 200 000.

'I feel very confident about sales of rosé all around the world,' François says. 'We keep the quality and keep the normal price.' The increasing demand means there is no need to discount or soften the price. 


Blanc d'Or de Minuty 2013 Vin de Pays du Var, France
Rolle, Sauvignon and Viognier. Vry fresh, lively, bright and clear with pure citrus flavours and a bit of grapefruit. 89/100

Chateau Minuty Rose et Or 2013 Cotes de Provence, France
95% Grenache, 5% Syrah. Very pale pink. Bright, pure and elegant with peach and a hint of cream. Very pure and crisp with nice focus and purity. Delicate. 90/100

Minuty Prestige 2013 Cotes de Provence, France
A hint of orange, with some texture. Dry and pure with stylish fruit and a hint of cream. Subtle white peach and pear with crispness and purity. 89/100

M de Minuty 2013 Cotes de Provence
Pale pink in colour with a hint of orange. Very fruity and direct with pears and cherries, as well as a hint of strawberry. Clean and focused. 88/100

Rouge et Or 2012 Cotes de Provence, France
Very spicy and bright with black cherry, herb, mint and pepper on the nose, together with some roast meat. Structured palate is spicy with nice black fruits, and some tangy cola notes on the finish. Savoury and spicy with nice grip and personality. 90/100

Jas d'Esclans
Domaine de Fontlade
Château Pigoudet
Château Gassier
Les Maîtres Vignerons de la Côtes de Provence Vidaubannaise
Les Maîtres Vignerons de la Presqu'île de Saint Tropez

Wines tasted 09/14


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