Gilles was instrumental in shaking this up and pioneered two highly expressive and unique single-vineyard cuvées, of which Le Combard is the second.
Despite having soil that’s both extraordinary and unique in the appellation (it’s covered in glacially deposited large pebbles—something common to Châteauneuf but unheard of in Côte Rôtie, and the volcanic subsoil is also unique) Le Combard had been abandoned since World War I.
Probably because this full-south facing lieux-dit at the southernmost part of the village of Ampuis is SERIOUSLY steep It took two decades of unbelievably difficult labour, rebuilding the terraces and even putting in a monorail to access the nearly vertical upper slope here.
Le Combard’s super special terroir produces a particularly savory peppery quality which marries beautifully with the floral character of its tiny touch of Viognier.
The result is an intensely aromatic Côte Rôtie that’s unlike any other.
Syrah (Shiraz), Viognier