Domaine Jean-Michel Stephan

Côte Rôtie

Before Jean-Michel took over his family vineyards in 1991, their grapes had been sold to the Guigal family, according to Jean-Michel’s mother they deemed them as good as the fruit produced on their famous parcels La Turque, la Landonne and La Mouline. His largest holding is the 1.5 hectares on the Coteau de Bassenon, a 40° slope with terraces cut into the soft granite and gneiss, some of the vineyards are so steep that only 25% can be worked with a horse, the rest has to be tended manually. The vineyards are farmed along biodynamic principles. At present he farms around 60% Syrah, 30% Serine and 10% Viognier, but he is planting more massale-selection Serine, an expressive, small berried Syrah clone almost unique to the northern Rhone. The Viognier is co-planted among the Serine and Syrah and therefore harvested and fermented alongside them. Jean-Michel prefers to ferment his cuvees using carbonic maceration in order to extract the most delicate aromatics while not accentuating the structure and concentration imparted by the low yielding vines. “I make wines on the fruit, without sulphur,” he says “I want fruit and maximum freshness".

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Region - Rhone Valley