In 2016 there were 285 hectares of vineyard under production across 77 villages, supporting around 40 winegrowers and 10 cooperative wineries. 10,945 hectolitres of wine were produced: 58% red, 25% white and 17% rosé. Of all the Rhône Valley AOCs making wine in all three colours, the Duché d’Uzès appellation is the leading producer of whites.
The Duché d’Uzès appellation area is bordered to the east by the Rhône Valley. The climate is influenced by the Mediterranean, but tempered by its distance from the coast and by the surrounding hillsides. The foothills of the Cévennes on the appellation’s western border prompt a significant swing in temperatures between day and night, giving the wines their distinctive character.
The vines grow predominantly in chalky clay soils on sloping plots alongside the garrigue, where the grapes can reach their full potential. The area’s geological make-up includes a variety of rock formations such as sandstone, marl, pebbles, ancient alluvium and hard limestone in repeating sequences; this creates a complex patchwork of different soil types, one of the Duché d’Uzès appellation’s major strengths.
The appellation area extends out to Monoblet, takes in most of the Duché d’Uzès’s historic lands and 77 villages in the Gard. Its limestone soils, combined with warm, wet summers and mild winters make this the perfect hunting-ground for truffles. Fresh truffles are available at the Saturday morning market in Uzès from December to March, and also on the third Sunday in January, which is earmarked as Truffle Day – la Journée de la Truffe.
With its 4,000 hectares of olive groves, the area is also France’s second largest producer of table olives. Picholine is the most widely grown variety, often combined with Négrette.