Rhône Valley

Domaine BELLE


Philippe Belle is passionate about his land, producing terroir driven, focussed wines from some of the area’s finest sites.


Yves Gras of Santa Duc and Philippe Belle are great friends and it was through Yves we were introduced to Domaine Belle. Ironically their wines could not be more different in style. The Belle family can trace their roots in Crozes-Hermitage back almost 250 years. They own land in some of the best parts of the appellation, as well as in St Joseph and Hermitage. Current wine maker Philippe Belle is an innovator. He has cut back on new oak, uses indigenous yeast fermentations and is in the process of converting the domaine to organic farming. His Crozes bottlings are delineated by the soils and rocks in the vineyard, from alluvial clay to almost pure granite. The effect these soils types have on the wines is profound. Philippe’s skilful working of his Syrah, both in the vineyard and winery, leaves a suave and measured feel in the mouth, utterly pleasurable in its roundness and depth of tarry fruit.

Current Vintages

70% Marsanne and 30% Roussanne grown on clay and limestone. Rich with a satin texture.
80-year-old Marsanne grown on clay and limestone.
60% Marsanne and 40% Roussanne grown on permeable limestone, sand and gravel in Les Murets, one of Hermitage’s finest sites for whites.
Les Pierrelles comes from terraced vineyards in the communes of Mercurol and Pont d’Isere, where galets roulés, large stones polished by the Rhône, sit on top of red clay soils and give wines of body and intensity. After hand harvesting the grapes are destemmed and fermented with indigenous yeasts.
From white limestone clay known as kaolin, only found in the Larnage commune in Crozes. This soil allows the vines to send their vines a long way down and does well in hot vintages.
Mostly from the commune of Crozes itself, and grown on granite, this is always a powerful, structured wine. 30% new oak.
This site sits on granite and marries power with a surprisingly delicate heart. In good vintages this ages brilliantly, picking up complex notes of iron and game with time in the bottle.
The Belle Hermitage comes from the limestone, sand and gravel of Les Murets which accounts for its rich seamless character, this isn’t the grippy masculine Hermitage that is grown on the granite found further west of the appellation. It drinks well relatively early, when its pure fruit is to the fore, and shows a different side to Syrah grown on this famous hill.

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