Read about Gilles Robin
The Robin family have grown grapes in Crozes-Hermitage for generations, but until 1995 they were always sold to the local cooperative in Tain l'Hermitage. By 2005 though, Gilles was bottling his entire production and making some very good wines. Today, on the release of his 21st vintage, he is producing some of the best wines of the appellation. The estate covers 15ha over several plots of land in the favoured Les Chassis district just south of the Hermitage hill. The soils in this area consist of large amounts of smooth pudding stones (galets) and red clay from the route the Rhône river once flowed. These richer clay based soils give a wine that is typically rounder and more generous than from some other areas of the appellation. Owing to the large amount of mature old vines at this estate most of the wine produced is of the premium Alberic Bouvet cuvée. This cuvee is produced from vines averaging 40 years age. Picking is done by hand and yields are kept low at around 38hl/ha. In the ripest years a small percentage of stems are allowed in the ferment and the wine is aged in barriques (and increasingly in larger 450 and 600 litre barrels) for about 15 months with about 15% new barrels used each year.