The Rhône Valley, past and present

Winemaking in the Rhône Valley started with the Greeks 2,500 years ago. However, it was the Romans that put Rhône on the wine map. As a result of Pope Clement V moving his headquarters from Rome up to Avignon in 1309. This became quintessential for winemaking in the area as the Churches appetite for wine in religious ceremonies spurred a rapid growth in viticulture and winemaking.

Today, wines from the Rhône Valley maintain their renown both from the Northern sub-region, including the reds from Côte Rôtie and whites from Condrieu. As well as reds and whites from the Southern sub-regions, among those Châteauneuf-du-Pape. It's also important not to forget what some refer to as “the king of rosé”, Tavel, also from the Southern sub-region.

The two sub-regions of the Rhône have very different climates. In the North the weather is continental with harsh winters and hot summers interrupted by the cooling mistral winds from the Massif Central highlands to the West. In the South the climate is Mediterranean with milder winters and hot summers. The diverse terroirs set the stage for a wide choice of wines from the Rhône Valley(s).


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