Domaine Romaneaux-Destezet was created in 1993 by Hervé Souhaut. His holdings on the acidic granite soils of the northern Rhône and the southern Ardèche are a mixture of new and ancient vines—from 50 to over 100 years old. Hervé works 5-hectares of these old and ancient vines, a beautiful and precious resource. He owns two vineyards in Saint-Joseph, just opposite the terraces of Hermitage. This region is, of course, legendary for the quality of its wines, thanks in part to its elevation, ancient vineyard sites, and southeastern and southern exposures. The domaine itself is located further into the hills of the northern Ardeche in the tiny town of Arlebosc, about a 30-minute drive, winding through the hills from St Joseph and the winery is underneath the 16th century “les romaneaux” fortified farm and sits in the middle of the vines that make up the Souteronne, Syrah, and white cuvées.
Saint-Jo Cessieux is delightfully fresh, a reminder that this variety can possess real finesse. This is Syrah is from 30-year-old-vines and rocky soils with a north-west exposure. Its bouquet yields aromas of red fruits, floral notes of rose and violets and pepper. On the palate dark red fruits and savoury elements of bacon fat are present, but they are subtle in comparison with the floral aromas. A Saint-Joseph that delivers a wonderful balance between intensity, freshness and a liquorice finish.