Domaine de PanisseCourthezon (Châteauneuf-du-Pape) | Rhône Valley
The younger generation at Le Clos du Caillou as of 2020 purchased a spectacular property north of the family estate in Courthézon. The winery is made up of a 15th-century farmhouse (the “mas”) and cellars, surrounded by acres of prime Châteauneuf-du-Pape vineyards, in the heart of lieu-dit ‘La Janasse’ in the far northeast corner of the appellation.
With many vines planted in 1924 and terroir that echoes Châteauneuf’s finest, winemaker Marilou Vacheron and her brother Axel are more than well-positioned to craft seriously compelling and character-rich southern blends.
FARMING & WINEMAKING
The estate totals some 16 acres of land, nearly half of which sit within the Châteauneuf-du-Pape appellation and just a few miles north of Le Clos du Caillou in Courthézon. The rest of the estate includes vineyards rated Côtes du Rhône, as well as lavender fields, olive trees and cypress trees.
Vines, many of which were planted in 1924, are cared for sustainably, according to both organic and biodynamic practices; the estate is seeking certification. Estate terroir is similar to what is found at Caillou, with silty and sandy soils, with some clay and large quartz stones. Importantly, much of the land appears drought resistant, a boon in ever-warmer growing seasons.
Grapes are harvested by hand in small crates, and currently are being trucked to the cellars at Le Clos du Caillou to be vinified. Grapes are fermented on indigenous yeasts in temperature-controlled tanks (either stainless steel or tapered wooden casks). Wines are aged in demi-muid or barrel for approximately 15 months. The estate’s first vintage under its new ownership was 2020. Wines are bottled unfined and unfiltered, with minimal added sulfites.
Côtes du Rhône Rouge 'Le Mazet'
Châteauneuf-du-Pape Rouge 'Le Mas'
A bold red and a beautiful tribute to the elegance and silk of very old-vine Grenache! The estate’s Châteauneuf vineyard surround the centuries-old farmhouse like a clock; here Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre and Cinsault are farmed and then blended. (This region, the lieu-dit ‘La Janasse,’ is also home to Domaine de la Janasse’s oldest vines.) Many vines were planted in the early 1920s.