Considering Rhone Blends

Learn about the three varieties that make up the wines of this region


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Considering Rhone Blends Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, we know more about these grapes than we might be aware of! Cotes du Rhone, Rhone rangers, and of course the GSM blends from Australia are all built on this fortunate trinity. Fortunate not only because they have come together nicely in various vineyards around the world, but also because they tend to work together exceptionally well, producing a wine that is more than the sum of its parts in places where each variety on its own might seem somehow incomplete.

From lowly Cotes du Rhone, to grand Chateauneuf-du-pape, this trio of grapes makes up some of the most familiar blends we all enjoy, from Grenache, with all its plum red fruit, and body benefits from the depth and darker fruit acidity, to the spice of Syrah, and the rich, tannin and earthy complexity contributed by Mourvedre. While there are additional varieties that add nuance to some of these wines, these three form the core of the typical Rhone blend.
Of course with today’s explosion of styles, many wines do not have all three of these varieties, substituting other varieties for the qualities they bring to the mix. This class of wines, loosely based on the Rhone Varieties, is as fascinating as it is broad, and worth taking a peek at.

Wine and Grape image via Shutterstock

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