Of all the discoveries for the shop through the last three years there's none that have captured my attention more than the Côte Rôtie of Chambeyron-Manin. Today, I'm thrilled to finally offer the much-anticipated 2015 vintage.

The secret is out on this tiny jewel of a domaine. At under 165 cases produced annually the Chambeyron-Manin domaine is small-production on a wildly different scale. They farm just a 0.5 hectare of a rare clone of Syrah named Serine in the decomposed granite, iron rich soils of the Côte Brune. 

While Côte Rôtie is the most seductive end of the Northern Rhone Valley, the Chambeyron's expression of Serine harnesses the dark and feral characteristics of the Côte Brune. With all the brawn and scorched earth elements of this combo it's the violet and lavender that still speaks to this slice of the most sensual Syrah on the globe.

I had thought visiting the Calmont vineyard in Mosel's Bremm would surely be the most jaw-dropping site of my wine travels, it being the world's steepest. But, when I descended into Ampuis, driving along the Rhone river and gazing up I realized this was a different animal. Immediately visualizing the hands-only work required on these towering terraces that stretched completely vertical from the river to the clouds brought on a sense of anxiety. Something like when Chief Brody saw that shark up close for the first time at the back of the boat. 

The Chambeyron-Manin family historically, like many here, sell meats, cheeses, and vegetables. The minuscule plot of vines they have just behind their home only supplement their "main" work operating their Les Jardins de la Côte-Rôtiemarket. Tasting their wine for the first time it's hard to imagine they would devote their lives to anything except ramping up production and getting it into as many hands as possible. But, alas, half a hectare is what it is, and I'm just so fortunate to have been introduced. 

The dark expression of Serine and the Côte Brune feature smoke, bacon fat, crushed rocks, dark plum, black pepper, and black olive notes with the vivid tell-tale florality that separate Côte Rôtie from its southern neighbors. I'm always on the hunt for more bottles from this domaine's current release, but finding wines with bottle age was a huge surprise.

2015 has demanded more interest than any other vintage in the Northern Rhone to date, and for good reason. The obvious element is the dry and warm year that turned out incredibly concentrated wines with relentless finishes. But, for me, it's the surprising freshness that has made them so very delicious.


2015 Chambeyron-Manin Côte-Rôtie Côte Brune
$99 per bottle 

3x 2015 Chambeyron-Manin Côte-Rôtie Côte Brune 1.5L
$229 per bottle.

12x 2013 Chambeyron-Manin Côte-Rôtie Côte Brune 
$109 per bottle.