A project between the iconic Washington state winery Chateau Ste. Michelle and the acclaimed Rhône winemaker Michel Gassier, Tenet Wines establishes a parallel between Syrah’s cradle and most renowned region, the Rhône Valley, and its tremendous potential on Washington’s basaltic slopes. Chateau Ste. Michelle’s Head Winemaker Bob Bertheau and Michel Gassier have combined their experience with the assistance of Southern Rhône's famous enology consultant, Philippe Cambie, and crafted wines from both regions, aiming to show the wines' respective character and their common excellence.
Michel Gassier grew up in Southern France on his family’s estate that was established in the 1940s and received a Master’s Degree in Agricultural Engineering from Purpan Engineering School in Toulouse, France. His lifelong experience in the vineyards and passion for fresh, mineral-driven wines has made him an expert in producing quality Syrahs from the Southern Rhône.
His efforts have been recognized internationally and his wines have garnered much attention by both French and international media. Robert Parker wrote, “the various cuvées produced by Michel Gassier and his American wife are quickly becoming the reference point wines for Costières de Nîmes. The quality of the wines is remarkable…They have access to over 175 acres of vineyards which they exploit in a dramatically impressive fashion.”
Philippe Cambie grew up on his family’s vineyard in the Languedoc. After receiving his diploma of Enology from University of Montpellier, he settled in Châteauneuf-du-Pape where he makes his wines and consults for a broad number of wineries. He has quietly earned the reputation of being the “nose” of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, helping his clients produce benchmark wines (he has 15 one-hundred point wines to his credit). Philippe was named Enologist of the year by Robert Parker in 2010, was a nominee for Winemaker of the Year by Wine Enthusiast in 2011, and was called “Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s Driving Force” by Wine Spectator in 2012.
After making wine in Sonoma for almost two decades, Bob Bertheau returned to his Northwest roots to join Chateau Ste. Michelle – Washington state’s founding winery. He has spent the past decade working with some of the best vineyards across the state and has helped to propel the rise of Washington wines to prominence around the world.
When he returned to Washington, Bob immediately recognized the great potential of Rhône varieties from distinct growing regions across the state. With Tenet Wines, Bob brings his nearly thirty years of experience to help produce Rhône-inspired wines that seek to realize the full potential of Washington’s renowned vineyards.