Region: Condrieu, Rhone, France
Old vines Viognier on muscovite-rich granite, the La Petite Côte is fermented spontaneously using native yeasts. Malolactic fermentation is done in barrels and big casks that are temperature controlled. The wine spends an additional nine months on the lees (no battonage and no racking) in barrel and large casks before bottling.
The Petite Cote exhibits all the distinct and lovely characteristics of Viognier. An exuberant nose with a bouquet of fruits: peach, apricot, quince and citrus, completed by sweet flowers (lilacs, rose, and violet). Fleshy and full on the palate with lovely spice and just a touch of bitterness on the finish that adds balance.
Pairing: This would be an excellent accompaniment to Mediterranean dishes such as a Moroccan lamb tajine with apricots and couscous. The spice in the wine works wonders with Indian food as well. This Chana Dal, New Delhi-Style by Mark Bittman, served with pan fried chicken thighs or slow braised pork is an amazing combo when enjoyed with this Viognier. Enjoy!
About: “Domaine Yves Cuilleron has been in the Cuilleron family for three generations, but it is the domaine's current owner and winemaker, Yves Cuilleron, who has expanded the size, scope, and scale of the estate's vineyard holdings and its winery.
Estate holdings were a mere 3.5 hectares (8.6 acres) in Condrieu and Saint-Joseph before Cuilleron took over in 1987. The estate now runs to 75 hectares (185 acres) of vineyard land across the additional appellations of Côte Rôtie, Crozes-Hermitage, Cornas and Saint-Péray as well as the lcal IGP title, IGP Collines Rhodaniennes.
Most of the vineyards are situated in and around the commune of Chavanay which is just south of the town of Condrieu; obviously, the holdings in Cote Rotie extend north into Ampuis and the holdings the furthest south are in the village of Saint Péray. A large majority of the vineyards are set on terraces which makes most mechanization difficult, if not impossible. Thus, much of the vineyard work continues to be done by hand. To control yields, Cuilleron does extensive debudding and, when necessary, practices a “green harvest”.” -Mad Rose
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