François & Fils

Northern Rhône, northern rhone France

The François family have been traditional farmers for four generations. Their main activity is making farmhouse cheese from the milk produced by their 25 cows, which they sell at local markets across the Rhône Valley. They began bottling their own Côte-Rôtie in 1991 and further expanded the wine side of their business when their son Yoann joined in 2004. Initially the family sold all their grapes to local négociants, but they are doing so less and less as the demand for Yoann's wines continues to grow.

Today, the François family owns four hectares in Côte-Rôtie. These vineyards are situated in the lieux-dits of 'Les Rochains', 'La Brosse', 'Rochin' and 'Le Bourrier'. The vines are low yielding and are harvested by hand due to the steepness of the slopes. Grapes from the young vines are sold to négociants or are used for their earlier drinking IGP Syrah. Only the best grapes are used to make their Côte-Rôtie.

Yoann vinifies the parcels separately and then blends them to make a wine with great balance and layers of complexity. The parcels are aged for 14 months in 30% new French oak, before the wine is blended just prior to bottling. Yoann makes Côte-Rôtie in the traditional manner, with 5% Viognier and around 30% whole-bunch Syrah in the ferment. This gives the wine an alluring fragrance of violets and lifted fruits.


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