Southern Rhone

"In a nutshell: warm, rich reds and a smattering of high-octane rosés...

Côtes du Rhône is south-east France's warmer, richer, spicier answer to the dry austerity of AC Bordeaux. The wines of the southern Rhône are France's most alcoholic, with 14-15% by no means uncommon for its most famous appellation, Châteauneuf-du-Pape (and no chaptalisation, or extra alcohol from added sugar, is allowed this far south).

While Côtes du Rhône can come from a vast area of around 56,000 ha (140,000 acres) around the southern end of the French Rhône Valley, Côtes du Rhône-Villages comes from a tightly defined area an eighth as big on particularly suitable land north and west of Châteauneuf-du-Pape... Côtes du Rhône-Villages is one of France's best-value appellations, perhaps because promotion prospects are so obvious...

Châteauneuf-du-Pape is the region's most famous and best wine, and all other reds and whites made here apparently use it as their model... Red Châteauneuf is a big, beefy wine with lots of alcohol and extract, with a come-hither, if slightly bludgeoning, approach to the wine drinker. I find this one of France's most reliable appellations, and have had remarkably few disappointments among wines bottled in the signature-embossed, heavy bottle...

Gigondas is another relatively reliable wine made, as a red and full rosé, in the image of Châteauneuf from higher, rockier ground. It costs less and usually tastes rather more rustic, a characteristic which has its own charm... Vacqueyras, the other upgraded Côtes-du-Rhône-Village, is not usually quite so dense, but can be very good value...

The southern Rhône's most famous rosé by far is Tavel, made on the right bank of the Rhône and a serious, historic wine in its own right... Just north of Tavel, Lirac produces considerable quantities of rosé very similar to Tavel and full-blooded red wine, as well as some full-bodied dry white... The southern Rhône also produces some sweet, relatively alcoholic vin doux naturel, most famously Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise." - Jancis Robinson

 

  • Chateau La Nerthe Chateauneuf-Du-Pape 2015

    Region: France- Rhone Valley Southern

    The property of Château La Nerthe has more than 90 ha. of vines. Archives attest to its birth in the sixteenth century, in 1560. At the end of the nineteenth century, following the phylloxera crisis, Commander Joseph Ducos, then at the head of the...

    Current stock: 5

    $98.00
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  • Chateau La Nerthe Les Cassagnes Cotes du Rhone 2017

    Region: France- Rhone Valley Southern

    "Cassagnes de La Nerthe is produced at Domaine de La Renjarde in Sérignan du Comtat, north of Orange. Owned by the Richard family of the famous Château La Nerthe in Châteauneuf du Pape, this estate is equally conducted with the same quality, also...

    Current stock: 1

    $35.50
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  • Chateau Mont-Redon Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2016

    Region: France- Rhone Valley Southern

    "Chateau Mont-Redon occupies one of the most exceptional vineyards areas of the Chateauneuf-du-Pape appellation, with a spectrum of soils unique in the region. The thirteen Chateauneuf-du-Pape appellation varieties reach perfect ripeness and...

    Current stock: 13

    $80.00
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  • Chateau Mont-Redon Reserve Cotes du Rhone 2017

    Region: France- Rhone Valley Southern

    "The Abeille-Fabre family, four generation proprietor of the famous estate Chateau Mont-Redon in Chateauneuf-du-Pape introduces here another prestigious brand. This Cotes-due-Rhone is a blend of noble classic varieties of the Rhone Valley. This wine,...

    Current stock: 13

    $23.50
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  • Delas Cotes du Rhone Saint-Esprit Rouge 2017

    Region: France- Rhone Valley Southern

    "Its deep colour has a dark, plum-like hue. The nose is classically Syrah, with berry fruit, violet, liquorice. It has a full, rounded palate with delicate tannins, making it unique in the "Côtes-du-Rhône" category." - Delas  

    Current stock: 7

    $25.00
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  • La Barroche Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2016

    Region: France- Rhone Valley Southern

    Wine Advocate 93 Points! "A terrific entry-level offering, the 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape Signature is a blend of 62% Grenache, 18% Mourvèdre, 12% Syrah, 6% Cinsault and 2% other varieties. It's full-bodied and intense but silky and almost weightless,...

    Current stock: 5

    $98.00
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  • Pierre Amadieu Cotes du Rhone Roulepierre 2016

    Region: France- Rhone Valley Southern

    "Exuberantly ripe, dried-strawberry and black-cherry flavors abound in this fruity, immediately approachable wine. Soft acidity accentuates its plush, silky mouthfeel but firm, persistent tannins lend structure to the finish." - Anna Lee Iijima, Wine...

    Current stock: 7

    $21.00
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