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AOC Côtes du Rhône-Villages
Among the red varieties, the most important is undoubtedly the red Grenache, which alone represents 65% of the vineyard in the Rhône. The Carignan variety is even more of a minority, with only 8.5% of the red varieties. More marginally, the Rhône vineyard also has 2.6% of Monastrell.
The wine region AOC Côtes-du-Rhône Villages created by decree in 1966 affects to 95 towns belonging to the geographical area of Drome, Vaucluse, Gard and Ardeche.
The Côtes-du-Rhône Villages with name, on the label you can see the name of the Domaine and the name of the Apellation, Côtes-du-Rhône. We can know to which village the vineyards belong. To be taken into account:
Vaucluse: Cairanne, Massif-d'uchaux, Pan-de-dieu, Puyméras (part in Drôme), Rasteau, Roaix, Sablet, Séguret, Valréas and Visan.
Drôme: Rochegude, Rousset-les-vignes, Saint-maurice-sur-eygues and Saint-pantaléon-les-vignes.
Gard: Chusclan, Laudun, Saint-gervais and Signargues.
The southern Rhône has a Mediterranean climate with about 2,700 hours of sunshine per year and a rainfall of 650-700 mm. The warmth of the lower northern part of the Rhône makes it possible to choose short-cycle grape varieties that ripen early, such as Syrah. While the high heat of the southern part favours the late-ripening Grenache grape. In addition, there are two types of wind, the south wind which usually brings clouds and rain, although the infrequent south wind Sirocco can bring heat and sand from the Sahara. The other north wind is the Mistral which blows south of Valence and increases in strength as it moves through the valleys. Even in Côte Rotie a special vine training has been developed to better withstand the winds. In the south, gobelet vine training is used for Grenache.
The geology is very diversified, as can be seen in Châteauneuf-du-Pape where you can find the famous boulder stones that appear in all the photos, as well as limestone and sandy soils. While the northern part of the Rhône is a country of great wines geographically well delimited (like the extraordinary amphitheatre of Cornas or the imposing hill of l'Heritage. On the importance of the volumes produced, even the great wines of the south - Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Gigondas, Vacqueyras, Tavel, Lirac - cannot show the homogeneity of their northern counterparts. This does not prevent this southern part of the Rhône from making great wines at affordable prices. The progress made in recent years, both by independent winemakers and by the wine merchants, shows how much the Rhône vineyards have been renewed.
Beyond these differences, there is a great common denominator between all the wines of the Rhône Valley: their sweetness. Pure reds with colour, dense wines with explosive fruit and fat, aromatic whites, this is the ideal profile of the best wines of the Rhône Valley.
Côtes du Rhône-Villages Wineries : Domaine Marcel Richaud, Domaine de l'Oratoire Saint-Martin, Domaine La Soumade, Domaine Court de Mautens, Maison Tardieu-Laurent, Domaine la Vieille Julienne, Domaine d'Aréia, Domaine Alary, Cave de Vigneros d'Estézargues, Domaine Cros de la Mûre, Mas de Libian, Château de Clapier, Domaine du Trapadis, Château la Verrerie.