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An ancient grape variety mentioned by the Roman author Pliny the Elder (23-79) in his scientific work "Naturalis Historia", and also by his Roman contemporary Columella (1st half of 1st century). The name probably derives from the Celtic tribe of the Allobroges, whose territory stretched between the Rhône and Isère rivers in Savoy and as far as Lake Geneva, and who were subjugated by Julius Caesar (100-44 BC). During the Roman colonisation, vines were planted on the right bank of the Rhone (in the present-day areas of Saint-Joseph, Côte Rôtie) and on the left bank (Hermitage). Pliny describes the red wine, also called Vinum picatum at the time, with a resinous taste and attributed this to the pine forests located around the vineyards. Columella put forward the more probable thesis that this was caused by the resinating of the wines or the amphorae sealed with resin, which was common at the time.

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