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Rhône Blends

Learn about Rhône Blends — taste profile, popular regions and more ...

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With bold fruit flavors and accents of sweet spice, red Rhône blends originated from France’s southern Rhône Valley. Grenache, supported by Syrah and Mourvèdre typically form the base of the blend, while Carignan, Cinsault and Counoise often come in to play. With some creative interpretation, Rhône blends have also become popular in Priorat, Washington, Australia and California.

Tasting Notes for Rhône Blends

A Rhône blend is a dry, red wine and will vary according to its individual components, as each variety brings something different to the glass. Grenache is the lightest in color but contributes plenty of ripe red fruit and a plush texture. Syrah supplies dark fruit flavors, along with savory, spicy and earthy notes. Mourvèdre is responsible for a floral perfume and earthy flavor as well as structure and a healthy dose of color. New World examples tend to be fruit-forward in style, while those from the Old World will often have more earth, structure and herbal components on top of ripe red and blue fruit.

Perfect Food Pairings for Rhône Blends

Rhône Blends work with a wide variety of meat-based dishes, playing equally well with beef, pork, lamb or game. Braised beef cheeks, grilled steak or sausages, roasted pork and squab are all fine pairings.

Sommelier Secrets for Rhône Blends

Some regions like to put their own local spin on the red Rhône blend—for example, in Australia’s Barossa Valley, Shiraz is commonly blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to add structure, tannin and a long finish. Grenache-based blends from Priorat often include Carignan (known locally as Cariñena) and Syrah, but also international varieties like Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, anything goes, and it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah make an appearance.

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  • Dom. du Grand Tinel Chateauneuf-du-Pape Cuvee Alexis Establet 2005 Front Label
    Dom. du Grand Tinel Chateauneuf-du-Pape Cuvee Alexis Establet 2005
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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  • Saxum James Berry Vineyard Bone Rock 2005 Front Label
    Saxum James Berry Vineyard Bone Rock 2005
    Rhone Red Blends from Central Coast, California
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  • Saxum Booker Vineyard 2005 Front Label
    Saxum Booker Vineyard 2005
    Rhone Red Blends from Central Coast, California
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  • Tardieu-Laurent Chateaneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes 2005 Front Label
    Tardieu-Laurent Chateaneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes 2005
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
    • WS96
    • RP93
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  • Saxum Booker Vineyard (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2005 Front Label
    Saxum Booker Vineyard (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2005
    Rhone Red Blends from Central Coast, California
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  • Saxum Rocket Block James Berry Vineyard (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2005 Front Label
    Saxum Rocket Block James Berry Vineyard (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2005
    Rhone Red Blends from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
    • RP96
    • WS94
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