Organic wines are few and far between in Côte-Rôtie. The terrain is steep and inaccessible to machines, the daylight hours long and toasty. To the North, the soil in Côte Brune is laden with iron-rich mica-shist; to the South, Côte Blonde soil is full of pale granite. Both are tough terrains and erosion is a common hazard and working by hand is a necessity. It is for these reasons, but not these reasons alone, that the wines of Jean-Michel Stephan are exceptional.
In 1991, Jean-Michel Stephan established his estate with only 2 hectares of land about 40 km south of Lyon. Following the principles of Jules Chauvet, he has made his Côte-Rôtie without correction nor additives since the beginning. One of only two certified Organic producers in the appellation, Stephan and his 25-year-old son, Romain, farm their 10 ha of Serine, Syrah, and Viognier. Only grown in Côte-Rôtie, the legendary Serine grape’s rootstock dates back from the early 20th century and was never shared outside of the vineyard’s walls. Characterized by their purity and an admirable freshness, the Maison Stephan wines breathe life into the AOP and express an irresistibly unique character.