Rhone Valley Wines
The Rhone Valley and its wines only began to make a name for themselves on the world scene towards the end of the 1980s. Before that time, thanks to the fame of nearby Burgundy, Rhone wines were considered only as rustic meal wines.
In reality, the wines of the Rhone Valley are high level products able to compete with the fine wines of Burgundy and Bordeaux, both in terms of quality and economy.
The Rhone Valley region is divided into two zones, the North Rhone and the South Rhone Valley, the first one is definitely more famous for its emblazoned and monovarietal appellations, the second one is instead famous for the great blended wines.
In the North Rhone Valley there are the most famous appellations: Hermitage, Côte-Rôtie, Saint- del RodanoJoseph, Cornas, Condrieu and Château-Grillet. Excluding the last two where only white Rhone wines based on Viognier are produced, the undisputed queen of the North Rhone Valley is the Syrah grape, which when vinified in purity gives red Rhone wines characterized by the intense aroma of black pepper.
If in the North Rhone is produced pure grapes, in the southern part everything changes and the wines are always the result of blends of different varieties, the main white berry grapes are Grenache Blanc, Clairete and Bourboulenc, while those among the red berry Grenache Noir, Mourvèdre and Cinsaut. The most famous appellation of Southern Rhône Valley is without any doubt Châteauneuf-du-Pape, famous for its red Rhône wines in whose composition it is possible to use as many as 14 different grapes. The other appellations of this area are Gigondas, Vacqueyras, Tavel and Beaumes-de-Venise.