Our latest auction, closing 4th July, comes from a restaurant cellar in the Ardèche on the banks of the Rhône river. Composed entirely of wines from this region, this catalogue is bursting with prestigious bottles. The owner of the Schaeffer hotel and restaurant has crafted a wine list over the years that offers the finest from this region. We take a closer look at this marvellous collection and meet the man behind the cellar.
The Schaeffer hotel and restaurant in the Ardèche is changing hands. After a pleasant first experience selling wine on the iDealwine platform, the proprietor has decided to sell another (magnificent) part of the restaurant’s cellar and it’s a celebration of the wonderful world of the Rhône.
Discover 200 cuvées in vintages ranging from 1994 to 2016. Whether you’re looking for something special to lay down or a mature bottle, there’s a marvellous selection up for auction in stunning vintages including Cornas from Auguste Clape and Côte-Rôtie from Jamet in the 1998 vintage. You’ll find plenty of Côte-Rôtie, Cornas and Saint-Joseph in 1999, 2001, 2005 and 2010 too.
This proprietor and fellow wine enthusiast has forged links with some of the most emblematic winemakers of a generation such as Alain Voge, Yves Cuilleron and Auguste Clape. Northern appellations such as Cornas, Côte-Rôtie, Saint-Joseph and Condrieu take pride of place with signatures such as François Villard and Georges Vernay. As lover of great Cornas, it is with great sadness that this seller puts his collection of Auguste Clape up for auction. As for Côte-Rôtie, this fine appellation is represented by some marvellous vintages that are ready to seduce tastebuds. The mythical LA-LA-LA bottles from Marcel Guigal are here as well as those from Domaine Jamet and Yves Cuilleron. Heading south, and to Châteauneuf-du-Pape, there is plenty of Perrin in this auction at its drinking apogée.
Wanting to know a little more about this beautiful cellar and the tastes of its collector, we spoke to the man behind this very particular collection…
When and how did you start your cellar?
I started my career at the age of 24 with very little knowledge of wine. I bought a pocket book about wine and used to read it religiously. I also used to learn a lot from the customers with a true passion for wine. My greatest advantage was living in a winemaking region. Being surrounded by winemakers who only work a few kilometres away makes wine far more accessible and it is very easy to learn when you’re in the field, as it were. Building my cellar up progressively allowed me to really appreciate the product. I even planted some vines in the Saint-Joseph appellation and I sell the fruit exclusively in my restaurant.
What was your strategy when building up your collection?
Living in this winemaking region meant that I tended to go for local bottles and as a result my cellar is composed mainly of Rhône wines. It has also allowed me to know the vintages of this area inside out and all the reputable producers. As a result, I have a good buyer’s intuition and when I want to buy some wine I go direct to the producer.
How do you store your wines? What sort of cellar do you have?
I was lucky enough to have an underground vaulted cellar that keeps the wines at a good temperature. We stock it ourselves and had enough space to store all our wines in 15 different vintages, and there was a lot!
Why did you choose to sell your wines with iDealwine?
I used your platform to sell wine a few months ago and I was impressed by your professional manner, good organisation and passionate employees. I wanted to sell through an honest company but most importantly I wanted to know that my wines were going to a clientele that would appreciate them for what they are. It pains me to hand over my cellar and knowing that my wines are going to a good home gives me consolation.
As we know you’re cellar contain many Rhône wines, but do you have any other favourite regions?
Yes of course. I love the wines from Alsace, Bordeaux and the Loire. A wine’s quality is more important to me than its region of origin and there is well-made wine everywhere, so I would have to say that I can appreciate wine from every region. For example, one day I even tasted a wine from Fief Vendéens…now la Vendée is not a region know for its wine savoir-faire!
What is your proudest acquisition?
I love Auguste Clape. They don’t call him the Pope of Cornas for nothing! I blind tasted one of his cuvées in the 1998 vintage a couple of days ago. It was sublime, matured in old barrels. As well as appreciating this man’s wine I also respect his great humility.
And your favourite tasting memory?
Thanks to my job I have many, such as the time there was a birthday dinner with 93 bottles from 1947 including Musigny, Latour, Jean-Louis Chave and many others; Another fond memory is a dinner with all the wines from Domaine de la Romanée-Conti. Truly memorable.
To conclude this interview, do you have any advice to those wishing to sell some wine?
You know, for me wine is something to share, it’s a story and an exchange between humans. I therefore don’t willingly separate myself from my cellar. I don’t know that I have any advice to give, perhaps apart from to sell through iDealwine!
The magnificent collection is now up for auction. Happy bidding fellow enthusiasts!
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