When Mr. Torstenson took over the management of Domaine Christiane Rabiega in 1988, the vineyard was mainly producing rather modest rosé wines. This limited the estate’s ability to generate revenue. With the aim of increasing profitability, Mr. Torstenson shifted the focus to high-quality red wines and remodeled Rabiega’s production and marketing strategy accordingly.
The use of fertilization and trimming were radically altered and green harvest was introduced in order to reduce the high output. This allowed to improve quality while also moving to organic production. Furthermore, a sorting table and a modern stalk separator were purchased, the fermentation programs were drastically revised and a new philosophy for working with oak in the maturing process was introduced. Much of this was unheard of in the area at the time.
The changes to the production were made to yield the sort of products to realize the new portfolio strategy and profitability goals. The vineyard’s name was changed to simply Domaine Rabiega and a new brand, Clos Dière, was introduced. Seven years after its introduction, Clos Dière cuvée I had become the most expensive wine of the Provence region and was sold in prestigious restaurants of the Côte d’Azur such as Alain Ducasse’s flagship, the Louis XV in Monaco. The wine has been awarded numerous prizes and high scores in various wine guides, most notably it was given 19.5/20 when assessed by Clive Coats, won a Decanter Award as well as the Trophé de Vinalies and it also came in third in GaultMillau’s Olympiade for the world’s best Syrah wines.