From Our Cellar

Christophe Pichon Saint Joseph Rouge 2015

About this wine

Saint Joseph is gaining in popularity and respect as a result of a new generation of winemakers with incredible commitment to elevating the quality of the wines from this appellation.

100% Syrah from a 4-hectare site with granite soil, about 75% in the mid-slope and 25% at the top. The vines average 35 years and the yield is 37 hl/ha. The grapes are handpicked. The wine spends one year in oak barrels ranging from new to four years.

About the grape

Syrah is the sixth most planted grape worldwide.  It thrives on steep slopes because of the dry climate and soil that enable deep root penetration.  The grapes are small and dark-skinned high in acid and tannins. 

Our tasting impressions

Showed a great deal of grapey baby fat, then a phase of rather chunky tannins. Lately, it has found its stride. It can be enjoyed now for its forward yet pure dark fruit and olive flavors. A short decant might help as it shows some of the ripeness of the vintage. It does seem there could be some reward of more mature, earthier character by holding for the near to mid term.

On your table

Break out hearty, bigger dishes like stews and roasts with beef or lamb. Given the ripe fruit, the addition of mustard, olives and other acidic touches will provide welcome balance.  A good dose of herbs is recommended as well.

Christophe Pichon

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Christophe Pichon

The Pichon family is a growing force in the Northern Rhône region. Christophe and Isabelle continue to steer the 18 hectare Domaine, but their sons, the third generation - Corentin, the principal winemaker and Alexis, who focuses on sales and marketing - are making their mark.

Based in Chavanay, the Pichons produce wines of elegance and finesse in a variety of appellations. Chemical treatment of the mostly Syrah and Viognier vineyards is kept to a bare minimum.

Their wines have long garnered excellent reviews from the leading Rhône region critics such as Jeb Dunnuck, Josh Raynolds (Vinous), Robert Parker and John Livingstone-Learmonth (Drink Rhône).

The joy of this family of eight is evident in their wines. VDLT has been visiting the Pichons for many years and is proud to include them as a foundation of the portfolio.  Last year, Alexis visited New York for the first time for a VDLT tasting event. We enjoyed introducing him to some of NYC’s finest, as well as bringing him to tour one of the best wineries on Long Island.