Top 5 White Rhone Varieties

The most popular grapes for GTiWhiteRhone


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Viognier is the most popular and most common white Rhône variety to be bottled on its own. In fact, it’s really the only one that has broken through the threshold to become popular and common.

Of course, the French knew about Viognier’s potential long ago when they began bottling it under the banner Condrieu and added dollops of it to Côte-Rôtie’s Syrah to help add oomph to the great Northern Rhône’s aromatics.

In the states, Viognier, with its nose redolent of peaches and honeysuckles, light fresh demeanor and not infrequent soupcon of sweetness, has made quite a name for itself. By the way, I’ve been waiting four years to sneak soupçon into something! Mission accomplished!

Viognier is produced in California but Virginia is emerging as a hotbed of Viognier activity. You can find fine Viognier coming from almost all over the globe including Australia, South Africa, Argentina, Chile and New Zealand.

Photo courtesy Brett Jordan via Flickr/CC

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  • Snooth User: Seabrooker
    167088 56

    Wilderotter (Amador County, CA) makes wonderful Viognier and Roussanne, along with their excellent reds (Rhone varietals as well as Zin and Barbera). They may be the best US producers of Rhone wines we've found.

    Mar 29, 2012 at 11:48 AM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 238,748

    Thanks for the tip! That's a new winery for me, and one I need to check out.

    Mar 29, 2012 at 11:58 AM

  • Snooth User: vatx
    890982 2

    Greg, Ferraton Cotes du Rhone Blanc Samorens is 60 Bourboulenc and 40 Clariette. Available in NYC I know, I've even seen it BTG in the Village.

    Mar 29, 2012 at 9:44 PM

  • Snooth User: vatx
    890982 2

    And Anglim makes great varietal Grenache Blanc from Paso.

    Mar 29, 2012 at 9:45 PM

  • Snooth User: VicAussie
    1039008 2

    Ah Marsanne, my favourite white variety, particularly when grown and produced at Chateau Tahbilk in the Nagambie Region of Victoria, Australia from 1866 vines.
    In particular their older vintages of between 8 - 12 years rival most oaked Chardonnays in colour, depth and complexity. Another reason to visit down under Greg!

    Mar 30, 2012 at 1:30 AM

  • how about a Condrieu From Guigal 100% Viognier Or Chante Allouette an Hermitage from M Chapoutier 100% Marsanne those are amazing example of Rhone Wines from actually the Rhone Valley

    Mar 30, 2012 at 3:53 AM

  • Snooth User: winewiz
    33698 2

    Chrysalis Vineyards has been making one of the top Viogniers in the US since 1997.

    Mar 30, 2012 at 9:10 AM

  • Snooth User: Stevern86
    909211 36

    For Rhone varietals try one stop shopping off the beaten path at Tablas Creek. This Paos Robles winery does Rousanne, Marsanne, Grenace Blanc, Picopul Balnc, and Petit Manseng, all as varietals and all "under one roof" so to speak. They also make white blends and another Mediterranean varietal, Vermentino. This grape is also grown in the southern Rhone and known as Rolle.

    Apr 02, 2012 at 4:14 PM

  • I love the Ferraton Samorens that vatx recommends. Ferraton also preduces a higher end LA Matiniere that is excellent. Both available in Southern New England, though they are a challenge to find.

    Jan 14, 2013 at 4:13 PM

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