Wine of the Week: Jean-Luc Colombo, Les Abeilles, Côtes-du-Rhône 2022 | Rhône Valley, France

By Dirk Smits

Winemaking and beekeeping go hand in hand at the Jean-Luc Colombo estate in the heart of Rhône, France. Harvesting grapes and honey began with the acquisition of their first plot of vines in “Les Ruchets” (The Beehives in French) in 1987.

Over the years, the winery has committed its resources to ensure the longevity of its colonies. Investing in education, eliminating the use of harsh pesticides, and planting nutritious flora allowed the bees to create a fruitful and biodiverse landscape that contributes to the health of their grapes and terroir.

Witnessing a depletion in the bees’ local and global population due to environmental factors and Colony Collapse Disorder, which threatens bees’ crucial role in agriculture, the Colombo family was compelled to spring into action. Together with their U.S. importer Taub Family Selections, they married two great passions—winemaking and beekeeping—to develop the Bee Helpful Program.

For every purchase of a bottle of Jean-Luc Colombo’s “Les Abeilles” (The Bees in French) Côtes-du-Rhône white or red, a donation is made to the UC Davis Department of Entomology in support of their research to help restore healthy honeybee colonies.

Origin: Rhône Valley, France
Varietal: 80% Clairette, 20% Roussanne
Price: $19.00
ABV: 13%

This light-yellow colored blend reveals notes of Meyer lemon, stone fruit and pear on the nose. The palate is well-balanced with juicy acidity and a lingering finish.

> For more information, visit Jean-Luc Colombo official website.

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