Hervé Souhaut is one of a kind, producing some of the most lithe, perfumed, and exuberant wines from the Rhone. He and his wife converted the cellars of her parents' centuries-old hunting lodge into the winery and now draw on four parcels of vines totaling 8.5 acres in Saint Joseph, as well as 20 additional acres of Vin de Pays vineyards on the plateau, planted primarily to Gamay, Roussanne and Viognier. The AOC wines are labeled under Souhaut's name, while the Vin de Pays cuvées are named Domaine Romaneaux-Destezet, in homage to the name of her parents' estate combined with Béatrice's family name.
The methods of Jules Chauvet are followed here, gently harvested and then the whole bunches undergo a pre-fermentation maceration at low temperature. Fermentation follows using natural yeasts in wooden and concrete tanks – the wine is then aged on fine lees in seasoned oak casks for eight to twelve months. Following that there is just a teeny dose of sulphur at bottling, which is done without filtration. All of this leading to balanced and elegant wines that are beautifully evocative on the nose.
The Sainte Epine is a historic plot of centurion vines that are gently handled to show Syrah in all its glory and nuance. Silky and fine with an evocative nose but by no means a shrinking violet when it comes to its weight. A pure expression that will change your perception of what fine Syrah can be.
Magnums of this are exceedingly rare.