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The Graillot family is synonymous with Crozes-Hermitage, with the late Alain Graillot being widely regarded as one of the Rhone’s finest winemakers. It was in 1985 that the legendary Alain Graillot, who after working with Jacques Seysses at Domaine Dujac, came back to his home in Crozes-Hermitage to start his own domaine. With each passing year, his devotion to the art of making hauntingly delicious Syrah has been rewarded with an ever growing and highly dedicated following around the world.
Given his talent and influence, it’s hardly surprising that his sons have also chosen to follow in his footsteps. Domaine Equis is the exciting project of Maxime Graillot, stretching across five meticulously farmed acres in the Crozes-Hermitage region. Maxime trained under his father from a young age, and his knowledge of the region allowed him to purchase top vineyards adjacent to his father’s Domaine. He now works organically across Domaine Equis, and like his late father, his goal is to produce enticing reds that showcase the power and potential of the Northern Rhone.
Planted in the 1980s and 1990s, the vineyard was in a dilapidated state when Maxime first acquired it. He has subsequently converted to working the vines organically, manual harvesting and restricted low yields. Maxime also manages several other vineyards in Cornas, St Joseph and Crozes, selecting tiny parcels of the very best grapes to make his Equis range.
Typically, the crop receives a pre-fermentation cooling for 3-5 days. Vinification lasts 3 weeks, with twice-daily cap punching. Barrel ageing lasts for 12-18 months in a mixture of used Burgundy barrels from domaines including Dujac, Arlot and Romanée-Conti – a third are one year-old, the rest a mix of 3-5 year old barrels.
The Crozes Hermitage ‘Equinoxe’ is an excellent, youthful example, crammed with dark, hedgerow-fruit scents and flavours offset by supple tannins. It is a juicy, forward-drinking, crowd-pleaser and is terrific value for money.
Lamb or roast duck, hard cheeses.
Best drunk in its youth.
Don’t just take our word for it…
“2020 Crozes-Hermitage Equinoxe Domaine Equis looked swaggering and proud with smoky bacon and cracked black pepper tones over a heady blackberry coulis palate. This was the finest value red on the day…”