Type: Ermitage “De L’Orée”
Grape Variety Used: 100% Marsanne
Alcohol Level: 14%
Length/Type of Fermentation: Hand harvested at advanced maturity. After pressing, the must is cold racked for 24 hours. About 50% is vinified in new oak, the rest in vats.
Length/Type of Aging: Before bottling, the maturaturation in casks is checked by frequent tastings. Organoleptic tests are carried out to determine how long it should remain in casks prior to bottling. Ageing on lees with regular stirring during 6 months.
Unlike Burgundy and Bordeaux, the Rhône does not have an official cru (vineyard) classification system. There are, however, lieux-dits, “named places” or place names that denote vineyard sites and plots within each appellation. Chapoutier owns some of the most famous plots in the Rhône, including 34 hectares within the tiny Hermitage appellation. This collection of highly sought after wines is coined “Selections Parcellaires”. These exceptional wines are created organically and biodinamically and imported to the United States once per year.
The name of this vineyard, “De L’Orée, was given by Michel Chapoutier’s grandfather who selected De L’Orée for the vineyard’s location at the eastern edge of Hermitage Hill – “Orée” means “edge” in French. “Orée” is also a reference to the color of the wine as “or” in French means “gold.”
De L’Orée is always a critic’s favorite with, at best, only 600 cases produced per year. 100% Marsanne, particularly intense due to low yields and high ripeness, this wine handles barrel fermentation without taking on overt oak tones. The site is the alluvial Coteaux des Murets in the eastern part of Hermitage Hill. It is one of the longest-living dry white wines in France.