Rhone Valley is located in southeastern France and one of the oldest growing regions in Europe. This wine region is a destination for great red wines. Its subsoils are incredibly varied with five major soil types. The vineyards rise steeply above the river Rhone; granite soils are often washed away by heavy rains.
The Rhone Valley wine region lies very close to the Mediterranean sea. It has over 75,000 hectares under vine and famous for the round, full-body, easy-drinking wines. It stretches 180 kilometers along the river that shares its name, depositing alluvial soils along its banks for millennia. Syrah, Viognier, Grenache, and many other grape varietals call this home.
Centuries ago Rhone River allowed wine merchants to ship their cargoes to distant markets, but it’s only been the last few decades since the popularity of these wines exploded.
Elegance and finesse
Rhone Valley is all about diversity. Pick a wine style and you’ll find it here from full-bodied structured reds to lighter everyday drinking wines, and there’s great value to be found. It’s no wonder that wines from this wine region are a favorite amongst wine enthusiasts and Rhone is probably one of the best values that you can get in the fine wine regions of France.
The Rhone Valley is a red wine country. It’s over 90% of what they produce, along with some whites, rose, fortified, and even sparkling wines. There are two distinct sections of the Rhone Valley and both of them feature different grape varieties. Northern Rhone is much smaller than the South with a slightly cooler semi-continental climate. The wines there are famous for their elegance and finesse.
Southern Rhone Valley is much broader than the north and the sun shines about 300 days a year here. The red wines from the east are generally fruitier and lighter in character while the wines from the west are more full-bodied and tannic with ripe black fruit.
The most important thing to understand about wines from the Southern Rhone is that the majority are blended from different grape varieties containing at least 40% Grenache, known for its rich fruit flavors, light acidity, and soft tannins.
Rhone Valley is one of the most distinctive wine-growing regions of the world.