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Chateauneuf-du-Pâpe

The History of Chateauneuf-du-Pâpe

Formerly “Castro Novo” which means “New Fortified Village”, the enclave of Chateauneuf-du-Pâpe is a wine village that has become famous for its beauty but above all for the quality of its wines. Particularly appreciated by the Popes of Avignon, they decided to set up a summer residence there and to give the status of “Wine of the Pope” to the nectars of the village which will then be exported all over the world.

At the end of the 19th century, during the restructuring of the vineyard following the phyloxera crisis, the final name of the village was voted: Chateauneuf-Du-Pape. From that moment on, the winegrowers formed the first wine syndicate in 1894 which became official in 1923. Finally, in 1936, the appellation will become one of the first AOC of France in the Côtés d’Arbois, Tavel, Cognac, Cassis, and Monbazillac.

Under our feet

Ripped from the side of the Alps by the Rhone River thousands of years ago, the majority of the vineyard’s surface is now covered with “Galets Roulés” (pebbles polished by water over time). These pebbles are beneficial for the vines since they store the sun’s heat during the day and release it back to the vines at night. They bring excellent ripeness to the grapes.

Beneath these pebbles, we find mainly red clay or hard limestone rock soils, or even some plots of sand. Overall, the vineyard is a real showcase for the natural and optimal development of the vine.

 

The 13 grape varieties

The Châteauneuf-Du-Pape appellation is made up of 13 grape varieties that have made it famous: Grenache Noir-Blanc-Gris, Mourvèdre, Syrah, Cinsault, Muscardin, Counoise, Clairette Blanche-Rosée, Bourboulenc, Roussanne, Piquepoul Blanc-Gris-Noir, Picardan, Terret and Vaccarèse. All these grape varieties can be used in the proportions that best suit the winemakers: creating a true aromatic palette of white and red wines.

Generally speaking, Châteauneuf red wines are wines with good structure, powerful and expressive noses with beautiful aromas of candied fruits, liquorice and spices. They are wines that lend themselves exceptionally well to long cellaring.

Yesterday more discreet, the production of white wines and today more and more common. We find wines with a great aromatic exposition that marry very well with great gastronomy. The wines are floral, with beautiful notes of spices and long finishes that go perfectly with fish and poultry.