Maury (8) is a fortified aperitif or dessert wine made from vines grown almost exclusively on black schist, hence the name Maury from Amarioles or Amarilolas meaning ‘black earth’. The vines are planted on small slopes in a basin area bordered to the north and south by spectacular limestone cliffs. To the north looms the Cathar Castle of Queribus.
Most wines are red, although some white wines are produced. Permitted grape varieties are Grenache Noir (at least 50%, Grenache Gris, Grenache Blanc and Maccabeu, and also (but rarely used) Carignan and Syrah.
The production process, known in France as mutage. Alcohol is added to the must to halt fermentation while sugar levels are still high, preserving the natural sugar of the grape. The wines are then matured in oak barrels, the resulting wine bears a similarity to port but tends to be lower in alcohol, normally around 17% abv.