2012 Côte-Rôtie, Ampodium, Domaine René Rostaing, Rhône

2012 Côte-Rôtie, Ampodium, Domaine René Rostaing, Rhône

Product: 20121158917
Prices start from £250.00 per case Buying options
2012 Côte-Rôtie, Ampodium, Domaine René Rostaing, Rhône


René Rostaing’s cellars are renowned for being among the coldest so when we visit we like to keep the pace up, before the cold penetrates tired feet.   His benchmark Côte-Rôtie, from 13 assorted plots in his care, and now firmly known as Ampodium rather than its previous label ‘’Classique’’, is always a pleasure to taste.   The 2012 has a fine crisp character, leading on to well-defined threads carrying the pure fruit through to a long, firm, assured finish.   A classic Côte-Rôtie, which will develop beautifully into the late 2020s; and for a very respectable price.
Tom Cave, Cellar Plan Manager

The Ampodium is sourced from 13 parcels, with an average vine age of 40 years and half of 2012’s crop destemmed. Exhibiting aromas of violet and bacon rind, then classic Rostaing grip, this is the appellation’s exemplar. After 42 vintages, M Rostaing is clearly in control of his brief; there is just enough tension here and finely etched tannins on the finish.
Simon Field MW, Rhône Wine Buyer 

One can usually rely on M. Rostaing for an aphoristic analysis of the vintage in question. 2012, he has decided, offers. ‘le plaisir évident mais avec le sérieux derrière’. Hardly Oscar Wilde, but the message is clear.  Whilst perhaps not an iron fist in a velvet glove, the vintage offers, pace the great man, plenty of substance and ageing potential. The imposition of a Latin name on his main cuvée has, it seems, been a success and he maintains his fleet of roto-fermentors, de-stemming the grapes as and when appropriate and now ageing the significant majority of his wines in demi-muid.  
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6 x 75cl bottle
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Critics reviews

Jancis Robinson16.5/20
Wine Advocate92/100
Jancis Robinson16.5/20
Inviting and slightly stemmy dark fruit. Fragrant herbal note that some might not like but I find it more fragrant than herbaceous. Very Rostaing. Charming.
Julia Harding MW, jancisrobsinson.com - Jan 2014 Read more
Wine Advocate92/100
Starting with Rene's classic Cote Rotie, the 2012 Cote Rotie Ampodium is a mostly destemmed blend from Rene's 13 different terroirs. It's aged in a combination of demi-muid and older barrels, with just 5% being new. It's smoking base cuvee that does everything right, offering up tons of sweet blackberry, wild herbs, pepper, spice and olive aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, beautifully textured and with impressive concentration, all while stay classic and elegant, it's a no-brainer purchase and will have 15-20 years of longevity.
Jeb Dunnuck - 30/12/2014 Read more

About this WINE

Domaine Rene Rostaing

Domaine Rene Rostaing

Pierre Rostaing is now firmly in charge of this domaine and running it very successfully, working by hand and mostly organically. His holdings in Côte-Rôtie now count 30 parcels across 11 hectares. In the winery, Pierre continues to use predominantly whole-bunch fermentation and the wines are matured in both demi-muids and Burgundy barrels. He keeps the barrels for ten years, electing to use only 10-15% new oak on average. This perfectly complements the domaine’s style, which beautifully showcases the terroir and makes for extremely dark, rich and long-lived wines. 

Pierre Rostaing talks of the fresh and balanced style of ’20, but it’s a shame that yields are down due to the drought over the summer. All his cuvées are superb this vintage, showing a real succulence that makes them a joy to taste, even en primeur. This year, we are delighted to offer a new single vineyard Côte-Rôtie from the lieu-dit, La Viaillère, a 0.5-hectare plot with vines up to 90 years old. This used to be a component of the Ampodium blend but Pierre is vinifying it separately for the first time in ’20.

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Côte-Rôtie is one of the most famous of the northern Rhône appellations, with some single vineyard cuvées now selling for the same prices as First Growth Bordeaux. It is the northernmost outpost of the Syrah grape.

Côte-Rôtie translates as ‘roasted hillside’, as the south-facing slopes are exposed to the maximum-possible sunlight. Vines have been planted here since Roman times, although the appellation was only created in 1940. Today it covers 500 hectares, with 276 hectares of vineyards stretched across eight kilometres.

Phylloxera devastated vineyards in the late 1800s and Côte-Rôtie’s fortunes remained in the doldrums for another century. After the War, a farmer would receive double the price for a kilo of apricots as for a kilo of grapes, hence vineyards were grubbed up and wine production became increasingly smaller.

It has only really been recognised as a top-quality wine-producing area since the 1970s, with Guigal being the main impetus behind its revival. The two best slopes, Côte Brune and Côte Blonde, rise steeply behind Ampuis and overlook the river. The Côte Brune wines are much firmer and more masculine (the soils are clay and ironstone), whereas the Côte Blonde makes wines with more finesse and elegance due to its light, sandy-limestone soil. Both the Côte Brune and Côte Blonde vineyards rise to 1,000 feet, with a gradient of 30 to 50 degrees.

The wines are made from the Syrah grape, however up to 20 percent of Viogner can be used in the blend, adding finesse, elegance and floral characteristics to the wine. Viognier ripens more quickly than Syrah and the appellation rules stipulate that the grapes must be added to the fermentation – rather than blended later. The best Côte-Rôtie are very deep in colour, tannic and spicy, and need 10 years to evolve and develop.

There are nearly 60 official vineyards (lieux-dits); the best-known are: La Mouline, La Chatillonne (Vidal-Fleury, owned by Guigal) and La Garde (Rostaing) in Côte Blonde; La Viallière, (Rostaing), La Landonne (Guigal, Rostaing) and La Turque (Guigal) in Côte Brune.

Styles vary from heavily-extracted tannic wines which need many years to soften through to lighter, supple and less-structured wines which do not require extended bottle ageing. The most famous wines of Côte-Rôtie are Guigal’s three single-vineyard cuvées: La Mouline, La Turque and La Landonne. These are aged in new wood for 48 months, and demand for them amongst connoisseurs and collectors is significant, leading to prices sometimes comparable to Bordeaux First Growths.

Recommended producers: GuigalGerrinRostaingOgierBurgaud
Best vintages: 2006, 2005, 2004, 2001, 1999, 1991, 1990, 1985

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A noble black grape variety grown particularly in the Northern Rhône where it produces the great red wines of Hermitage, Cote Rôtie and Cornas, and in Australia where it produces wines of startling depth and intensity. Reasonably low yields are a crucial factor for quality as is picking at optimum ripeness. Its heartland, Hermitage and Côte Rôtie, consists of 270 hectares of steeply terraced vineyards producing wines that brim with pepper, spices, tar and black treacle when young. After 5-10 years they become smooth and velvety with pronounced fruit characteristics of damsons, raspberries, blackcurrants and loganberries.

It is now grown extensively in the Southern Rhône where it is blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre to produce the great red wines of Châteauneuf du Pape and Gigondas amongst others. Its spiritual home in Australia is the Barossa Valley, where there are plantings dating as far back as 1860. Australian Shiraz tends to be sweeter than its Northern Rhône counterpart and the best examples are redolent of new leather, dark chocolate, liquorice, and prunes and display a blackcurrant lusciousness.

South African producers such as Eben Sadie are now producing world- class Shiraz wines that represent astonishing value for money.

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