AOC Côte Rôtie
History has it that vines were planted here centuries ago. Two thousand years ago the Latin authors Martial, Pline l’Ancien, Columelle and Plutarque called the wine from Côte Rôtie “Vin Viennois”.
During the Middle Ages and Renaissance, the reputation of the wines from Ampuis just grew bigger. Before the revolution wines from Côte Rôtie were sent to Royal tables around the world; England, Russia, Prussia and France. The vineyard reached its peak in 1890. Every inch of sunny hillside was planted with vines. At this time, the outbreaks of Phyloxera and other diseases didn’t demotivate the winegrowers. Unfortunately World War One will ruin all their efforts. Over 150 men were sent to war and the vineyards were abandoned. It is only in the sixties that the vineyard was attended again.
The vineyard of Côte Rôtie is located on the hills of the right bank of the Rhône river. Some of the slopes exceed 60%. The vineyard is located at an altitude ranging between 180 and 325 metres and is composed of 73 localities.
The main stone is granite covered in places by schist but also sand and calcareous soils.
For the most part, our wine comes from the southern part of the appellation; Côte Blonde and Coteau de Tupin. We wished to make wines with great distinction but also with elegance and finesse rather than wines from the north that tend to be harder and more powerful.
The vintage :
Following the cold months of January and February, the spring was intermittent with periods of sunshine and rain favourable to the growth of the vines. The summer was hot and dry with record temperatures in the middle of August. After a bit of rain mid-September, which allowed to swell up the grapes, the maturing continued when the sun returned. During this period, the days were hot and the nights were cool which provided a good sanitary state to the crop. Ideal conditions for a beautiful harvest which started around 20th September and finished around the 10th October.
The vineyard of Côte Rôtie is located on the hills of the right bank of the Rhône riverto the north and south of the village of Ampuis. Some of the slopes exceed 60%. The vineyard is located at an altitude ranging between 180 and 325 metres and is composed of 73 different localities.
The grapes are cold-macerated before being fermented to increase the aromas of fruit. Maceration and fermentation for about 20 days with pumping-over for the first few days followed by punching-down. Ageing in 1-year-old barrels for 15 months.
Tasting notes :
The dark colour shows a good concentration.
The nose is a bit closed when first opened but after airing, aromas of black fruit and spices appear.
The mouth is silky, elegant and very flattering. The finish is long and shows that the wine has plenty of life in it.
Currently this wine needs to be decanted at least an hour before serving.
Drink in it’s youth: Slow roasted lamb will be a great match for this wine.
The outstanding 2009 Cote Rotie offers up floral notes intermixed with black cherry, raspberry, forest floor and licorice aromas. This medium-bodied wine’s complex aromatics are followed by elegant yet substantial flavors. Drink it over the next decade.
Robert Parker, Wine Advocate, Note : 92/100, 2011-12-01