Just north of the town of Vienne, on the opposite bank of the Rhône from Côte Rôtie, the little known Seyssuel appellation has a history as long as any other in the Rhône Valley. Vienne was an important town in Roman Gaul and according to Pliny the Elder, the Romans enjoyed the local Seyssuel wines. In the region’s more recent history, whereas the vineyards on the Côte Rôtie side of the river were re-established after decimation by phylloxera in the 1880s and neglect during the First World War, Seyssuel was all but abandoned. It was in the 1990s that a group of northern Rhône winemakers decided that the time had come to resurrect these overgrown vineyards. Among them were Michel and Stéphane Ogier, who – along with their fellow winemakers – believe that this area has the potential to produce wines to rival its neighbour’s. We were delighted to discover this truth for the first time last year with the 2015 vintage, and once again the 2016 L’Ame Soeur is stunning. 98% Syrah with 2% Viognier (co-planted), colour is deep ruby-purple, aromas being beautifully floral. Palate is seriously seductive: full bodied, rich and velvety in the mouth, there is lovely depth of juicy black cherry and blueberry flavours, the finish being fresh and full of finesse (for drinking 2020-2028+).