Q & A with Pauline Guiset, Brand Manager for Cellier des Dauphins

This month, we head to the beating heart of the Rhône Valley to find out more about Cellier des Dauphins – the number one AOC wine brand in France, famous for its iconic bottle shape and superb quality. Brand Manager Pauline Guiset tells us more…

Tell us about your vineyards at Cellier des Dauphins

In the heart of the Rhône Valley, Cellier des Dauphins was created in 1965 by men and women of the land, out of a desire to work together to showcase both the fruit of the terroir and their skills. Cellier des Dauphins literally means wine cellar to the heirs of the throne of France.

Cellier des Dauphins’ southern vineyards stretch out to the south East of the Rhône Valley, some 700km from Paris and 200km from Lyon, in the Dauphiné historical region.  Starting at Nyons, gateway to the Alps and capital of the Baronnies region, they are scattered over the terraces of the valleys of the Eygues and the Ouvèze, pre-alpine rivers tributaries of the Rhône, passing through Saint-Pantaléon-les-Vignes to the north and Sérignan du Comtat to the south before finally reaching the city of Orange.

Today, Cellier des Dauphins unites 2,000 wine growing families who cultivate 12,000 hectares of vines, of which 1350 hectares are certified as organic, and covers around a dozen appellations.

What grapes do you grow, and how does the climate and terroir help the varieties to flourish?

Cellier des Dauphins benefits from the widest palette of terroirs and microclimates in the southern Rhone Valley.  On the sun-drenched terroirs, the emblematic grape varieties of the Côtes du Rhône flourish:  principally Syrah, Grenache, Viognier, Mourvèdre, and also Grenache Blanc, Caladoc, Marselan.

With a sunny Mediterranean climate cooled by Mistral winds, we enjoy dry winters and summers with high temperatures. Rain falls primarily in autumn and spring.

Tell us about your eco, sustainable and ethical practices

Cellier des Dauphins is an union of winegrowers who live with their families and work locally. We are eager to drive eco-friendly initiatives designed to promote sustainable vineyards.

Our main goal is to ensure that our wines are environmentally-sound and economically strong.  We are working hard to reduce our environmental footprint both in the vineyard (by meeting government sustainability criteria and earning the label Haute Valeur Environnementale) and by product waste reduction (including eco-design, waste water treatment, recycling, solar and energy production).

What excites you most about the future?

The future looks bright thanks to a new generation of wine lovers now looking for both taste and experience, whilst also paying attention to what’s behind the bottle.

To what do you attribute your success? 

Cellier des Dauphins always listens to  consumers and tries hard to be ahead of expectations in terms of taste, quality, packaging and experience – whilst also remaining accessible. From the vine to the glass, CDD is bringing southern conviviality to its consumer.

We put our family of grape growers at the heart of our philosophy – giving a long-term and partnership outlook to business decisions and brand management that can transcend generations.

Elevator pitch for retailers – why should they stock your wines in 100 words or less

Cellier des Dauphins’ winegrowers offer vibrant and complex fruit-driven wines from the sun-drenched vineyards of the Southern Rhone, bringing the best conviviality wines onto the table.  Unequalled value-with-pleasure, our range spreads from IGP to Côtes du Rhône, Côtes du Rhône Village such as Plan de Dieu and Crus such as Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Cairanne and Vinsbores. All our wines are grown respecting our land and packed in the most conscious way. The leading Rhône producer and the number one AOP brand in the French off trade, we’re a global brand and a beacon for consumers in the Rhône category.