A family wine estate in the Cote Rotie appellation of the norhern Rhone has had 1,800 bottles of wine worth tens of thousands of euros stolen from its cellars.

Thieves broke into the cellars of Domaine Garon in the early hours of Monday morning (7 December).

The Garon family has been making wine in the village of Ampuis since the 15th century, with brothers Kevin and Fabien in charge since 2003.

They have produced Cote Rotie Les Triotes since 2006, together with two further cuvees named des Rochins and La Sybarine.

At the time of the theft, the cases of wine were in the cellar, stacked on palettes ready for shipping to clients in France and internationally.

French newspaper Le Progres reported a local police source as saying burglaries at wineries were rare, but were more frequent towards the end of year, when wine is often being shipped to customers for Christmas and New Year celebrations.

The final cost to the Garon family is still being calculated, but could be as high as €100,000 (£79,000) based on a retail price range for its wines of €30 to €60 in France. It is thought most of the stolen wines were from the 2012 vintage.

Written by Jane Anson