Hermitage wines possess a rich historical past.
They were appreciated as early on as Roman times when they were enjoyed (as well as Côte Rotie wines) under the name of " Vienne wines "and were later to be called " Saint Christopher's hillside wines " because of a chapel there bearing the saint's name. They were also to be known of as " Tournon wines ".
The name of Hermitage probably first appeared in the XVIIth Century in memory of Henry Gaspard, a knight from Stérimberg : who having come back from the Crusades (in the XIIIth Century) and tired of waging war, lived as a hermite on a hillside which had been given to him by Anne of Castille,Queen of Spain.
There he planted a vineyard. Alexander Dumas as well as the Tsar Nicholas II are among the many connoisseurs of this particularly highly estimated wine.
The grapes producing this wine come from three different vineyards:
• “Le Méal”: this is an old fluvioglacial alluvial deposit soil with numerous shingles.
• “Les Murets”: soils consist of granitic arena and alluvial deposits of same nature.
• “Chante-Alouette”: it is set on loess soil with a fine layer of clay and limestone.
Hand-harvesting at maturity.
After pressing, the must is cold-settling for 48 hours. One third is vinified in big wooden barrels (600 liters) with regular stirrings and the other part in vats.
The temperature of fermentation is regulated in order to develop the aromatic complexity of wines (18-20°C).
Before bottling, the wine is checked by frequent tastings.
These are the organoleptic criteria which will determine the ageing period (from 10 to 12 months).
COLOUR : brilliant and green gold.
NOSE : complex and subtle, aromas of quince, walnut, honey, ginger, acacia with a hint of linden-tree.
MOUTH : frank attack, without aggressiveness, final of almond, very elegant and good length.