M. Chapoutier Crozes-Hermitage La Petite Ruche 2013

Pleasantly nostalgic and earthy, distinct and wonderfully expressive. A bold character masterfully crafted.

Dense ruby in colour.

First impact of barnyard followed by intense aromas of blackberry, raspberry, cherry and peppercorns with soft hints of chocolate.

On the palate it’s dry with medium-high acidity and bold tannins, berry flavours quickly checked by peppery spices.

A bold and young wine showing potential for longevity.

88 points

Food pairings:

The balance of juicy berry flavours and spices makes this wine a perfect pair for red meat and game. Some examples: roasted lamb, barbecue ribs, filet mignon

Crozes-Hermitage is a French AOC found in the northern region of Rhône. It is one of the largest regions in northern Rhône and is generally viewed with less prestige than other neighbouring regions such as Côte-Rôtie and Hermitage, which also makes the prices more approachable. This AOC surrounds the hill of Hermitage, with terraced vineyards, a rich soil with a mixture of granite and clay, and plenty of sun exposure. The wine is 100% Syrah, typical of the region. It is vinified and aged in cement vats, leading to a pure expression of the grape with no influence from oak barrels.

Michele Chapoutier’s motto is “fac & spera”, meaning “do and hope “. His philosophy revolves around less human intervention in order to let the soil live, thrive and speak through his wines. This can be seen not only in his choice of making single vineyard wines with a single varietal, but also in the organic and biodynamic farming methods he uses. While organic farming searches for alternatives to chemical products, biodynamic farming takes a much more 360 degree approach, encouraging vegetal diversity among many other practices. Upon switching to biodynamic farming in 1991, Chapoutier stated that he witnessed an explosion of life in his vineyards which led to much more expression of the soil in his wines and a longer length to the finish. His passion for the soil as a living and active element is what makes his wines truly unique, and I can honestly say it was the first wine where I actually smelled the earth as if it was right under my nose.

Click the link below to watch Chapoutier himself speak about his wines and his philosophy…



  1. You’ve left Italy! You’re in my territory now, the Rhône was the first wine region I ever visited with our children in 1987. My daughter and her husband love wines from around here, and from Chapoutier specifically. Châteauneuf du Pape is a family favourite too especially the wines of Mont Redon. Also Tavel Rose …. happy memories of wonderful holidays and wine festivals, especially Fete du Veraison in Chateauneuf. Oh, and …… another lovely piece of artwork. I’m going to Reblog this as I like it so much so you may get some hits from my followers. 👍✅

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve just left symbolically 😉 This region was a first for me, of sorts, as well! Some of the first French wines I drank were Côtes du Rhône, and I love the art festival in Avignone. I heard that Châteauneuf-du-Pape traditionally used up to 13 red and white varietals in their blends! Have yet to try it though, definitely a region I want to explore more. Thank you so much for reblogging my post! 🥂🥂🥂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Chateauneuf du Pape, La Symphonie de Treize Cepages! Look up the Fete du Veraison in Chateauneuf held first weekend in August every year, the best medieval wine festival I have ever attended!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. First …. thank you, I will do one for you too, but timing is everything. We bloggers help each other this way, so you write a post for my blog on a topic I advise. It’s then posted on my blog because I have more followers, but you Reblog it to attract MY followers to your site. Then when you are ready we do it in reverse and I write an article for you. Topic? I really admire your artwork and focused descriptions of a wine, but I believe in blogging more about an appellation or region, their wines, indigenous grapes, culture, history, terroir …. So, you know I am following a Wines 101 list to begin Italy … so how about a post to introduce me to Tuscany? Appellation, grapes, important wines, history, culture …. all with some nice artwork. It will all be linked back to your blog from mine and I will spread it on Twitter too. No hurry, I’m off to France on Sunday 👍🍾


      3. Lucky you off to France again! Very interesting idea, I’m just starting out with blogging so I could use all the help I can get. Unfortunately I don’t have many followers, so I hope it will be beneficial for you too. I’m actually working on an article about the region of Campania at the moment, so Tuscany would be along the same lines as well. No problem, lots I could talk about! What kind of time frame are you thinking?

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Absolutely no time frame at all, please do not hurry, helping each other is not a short term one off! I’m in France for a week, then writing about it only when I return. So please …. you decide because it helps both of us but you want to do your own posts too! Maybe first week of September?


      5. Staying in Fontevraud in La Croix Blanche Hotel. Halfway between Chinon and Saumur. My long suffering wife is allowing me to chase wines In Pouilly Fume, Vouvray, Savennierre, Chinon. You can see which wines I’m chasing on Wines 101 on my blog.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on Wine Tales From Mindful Travels and commented:
    An artistic post from Vinthropology, a sommelier in Italy who writes extensive tasting notes, but who unusually sketches a piece of artwork around an image of a wine’s label to illustrate visually the aromas and flavours to be found. Whether you are a wine lover or not, her own artwork is to be admired and appreciated. Do visit her blog to see more.


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