Côteaux de Bassenon is the most southerly vineyard in Côte-Rôtie, and is sometimes labeled Côteaux de Semons. The majority of Jean-Michel's vines in this parcel were planted in 1896, which would make them the first vines planted after the phylloxera epidemic devastated French vineyards in the late 19th century. 20% of the vineyard is planted to Viognier, and the rest is planted half to Serine (the oldest vines) and half to Syrah. In 2020, Jean-Michel and Romain planted an additional 0.4 ha.
Notes from Paris Wine Company:
"Having vinified over 30 vintages of Côte-Rôtie, Jean-Michel Stephan is one of the true masters of natural winemaking in the Northern Rhône. His wines have a vivacious purity that make them instantly identifiable, marked by a balance of energy and transcendence that comes from a lifetime pursuit of his vision to craft flawless wines with absolutely no additives.
The domaine farms five hectares of Côte-Rôtie spread between three different parcels: Côteaux de Bassenon, Côteaux de Tupin, and a tiny plot in Côte Brune. Each parcel is vinified separately using carbonic or semi-carbonic maceration depending on the vintage, without the addition of any yeast, enzymes, or SO2. Les Binards comes from the lower part of Tupin and is aged for 12 months in stainless steel tanks. The other three cuvées are all aged in barrel for 12-24 months.
In 2017, his son Romain joined the domaine, and together, they planted an additional five hectares outside the Côte-Rôtie appellation in the nearby towns of Roussillon, Verin, Condrieu, Ampuis, and Chasse-sur-Rhône."