iDealwine update: Northern Soul

The wines of Côte-Rôtie, in the north of the Rhône, are becoming increasingly sought after, with prices on the rise, and demand showing no sign of slowing down.

AFTER YEARS in the background, the WineDex Rhône, based on 10 vintages of a selection of 25 top wines from the region, has risen significantly of late. It saw a double-figure increase in 2016 (11.15%), outperforming the Bordeaux (5.67%) and Burgundy indices (6.9%).

The trend is certainly not fading away, and since the start of 2017, Rhône indices have increased by another 6.5%. This rise is
explained by sustained demand in traditional markets like France, Switzerland and the UK, and is starting to take off among savvy American and Asian bidders.

Americans who focused their attention on Bordeaux from the 2009 vintage and Burgundy from the 2011s are increasingly bidding on the Rhône.

Recent auctions on iDealwine have seen important interest from bidders for CôteRôtie, the northern tip of the region. The
celebrated Domaine Guigal, which accounts for about 40% of the whole appellation, sets the benchmark with its legendary trio of ‘La La’ cuvées.

However, a handful of smaller iconic producers are setting the bar high too and prices are seriously on the rise.

iDealwine average auction prices from 2013 to 2017 for Jamet Côte-Rôtie

Wine 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Côte-Brune 1999 €123 €137 €387 €456 €456
Côte-Brune 2001 €157 €159 €252 €294 €301
Côte-Brune 2005 €167 €192 €276 €276 €289
Côte-Brune 2010 €195 €180 €256 €270 €433
Côte-Brune 1999 €121 €134 €216 €234 €258
Côte-Brune 2001 €71 €89 €120 €150 €153
Côte-Brune 2005 €77 €78 €117 €136 €132
Côte-Brune 2010 €41 €76 €86 €116 €144

Source: iDealwine

The vineyard of Côte-Rôtie dates from Roman times and today covers 235 hectares. Planted on steep terraced slopes, with altitudes varying from 140m to 320m above sea level between Ampuis, SaintCyr-sur-Rhône and Tupins-Sémons, the yields are extremely low, thanks to the complex topography and vines that are entirely worked by hand.

Mainly south-facing, the entire area benefits from a micro-climate that is particularly well-suited to vines that require long maturation processes. The intensive heat waves it is subject to are tempered by the northern wind La Bise that sweeps in from the town of Vienne. Established in the early 1950s, the land that became the Jamet vineyard was mainly planted with fruit trees because
grape growing wasn’t lucrative enough at that time.

Local négociants used to buy the entire production until 1976 when Joseph Jamet bottled his first vintage, with the help of his son Jean-Paul. A lot has been achieved since then and today these wines are considered some of the best Côte-Rôtie.


> iDealwine is an international finewine e-merchant with offices in Paris, Hong Kong and London. Specialising in online auctions and fixed-price sales, iDealwine was launched in France in 2000, and is now the online auction leader in Europe, supplying to 50 countries in Europe, Asia and the US.
> Wine is sourced from private European cellars and directly from the wineries, with a large range that includes rare bottles and vintages.
> iDealwine provides wine-market data and analysis, with more than 60,000 price estimates based on more than three million auction prices.
> Contact: Arthur de Lencquesaing –

The 8ha vineyard of Jamet is mainly located on the plateau of Le Vallin. The terraces, called chayets, enable work in the vines with steep hillsides, and have predominantly schist and some granite subsoils. Jamet has not moved to biodynamic or organic production but is
supporting sustainable viticulture with minimum intervention in the vineyard and in the vinification process.

The classic Côte-Rôtie is made from a blend of 25 parcels, whole-bunch fermented and aged for 22 months in 225-litre- to 600l barrels, with about 15% new oak. Jean-Paul Jamet particularly favours this wine because he values the complexity brought by the art of blending
different parcels with very distinctive profiles to reach the right balance between finesse and structure.

The Côte-Brune comes from a single parcel of half a hectare in the eponymous location. Located in the northern part of the appellation, it is characterised by iron traces in its soils, which contribute to creating its dark colour and structure.

Even though the appellation allows winemakers to use up to 20% of Viognier in the blend, his Côte-Brune are 100% Syrah. The wines undergo a slightly longer barrel ageing of 24 months and twice the proportion of new oak (30%) than the classic Côte-Rôtie.

Highly sought after for its depth and long ageing potential, the wine is produced in tiny quantities. Only 200 cases were made from the 2009 vintage, for example.

The first online auction of September on iDealwine featured a great collection of Côte-Brune from Jamet: the 2010 vintage sold to a Swiss wine lover for €608 (£536) a bottle, an increase of 40% compared with its previous average auction price, while the same bidder won the 2005 for €377 (an increase of 31%). The 2001, at €365 (a rise of 21%) went to a French collector bidding over a Hong Kong
customer. Mature vintages performed particularly well but the most recent ones, such as the 2013, which went under the hammer for
€304 (+30%), were not left aside. At a more accessible price point, the classic Côte-Rôtie is now often passing the threshold of €150, as the 2002 sold for €170 (+18%) to a private collector from the Netherlands. Across the range, prices are on the rise, and even though bids arise from many countries, the traditional markets remain the main bidders.

The increased age of the vineyard and recent investments in the cellar have supported the consistent quality across the years, even in lesser vintages.

Furthermore, the combination of the price increase for top Bordeaux and Burgundy, and growing interest for the Rhône, have supported the interest for these relatively small cuvées. Jamet is clearly one of the most reputable producers in Côte-Rôtie, and the demand for his savoury wines should not slow down anytime soon.


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