A popular choice for a vacation in France is to visit the prestigious wine regions across the country to sample some of the most astounding wines globally and enjoy the pleasant summer sun and stunning scenery. Côtes Du Rhône wineries are the perfect place for a wine-tasting vacation with friends or your partner, and so we’ve listed some of the best wineries that you could visit in preparation for this trip.
What Is Côtes Du Rhône?
This is an Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée or AOC, which is essentially a registered geographical area designated for producing certain authentic products. In this case, Côtes Du Rhône AOC is a wine-growing appellation set within the Rhône Valley wine region. Since before the Roman Empire populated the regions of France and much of the rest of Europe, Côtes Du Rhône wineries and vineyards were producing quality grapes that are still grown today for use in some of the world’s best wines. This area is also notable for the beautiful landscape surrounding the green vineyards and small towns and villages along the valley, making it a particularly romantic destination for relaxation and enjoyment.
Wineries To Visit
There are several fantastic Côtes Du Rhône wineries that you can visit during your trip that offer extensive experiences above simply buying some great bottles of wine straight from the source. Some offer tours around their beautiful vineyards and winemaking facilities so you can see just how they make the best Côtes Du Rhône red wine as well as whites and rosés. To help make your decision easier on which wineries to visit, we cast a look at the brilliant winery and gourmet experiences available via La Vallée de la Gastronomie - France ®, all of which have their quirks and features.
Caveau Du Château
Situated in the northern parts of the Rhône Valley, this vineyard and winery offers some amazing red and white wine Côtes Du Rhône. Not only is their wine of exceptional quality, which is all available to purchase at Caveau Du Château, but they also provide guests with the opportunity to try their hand at wine tasting experiences, as well as take a tour around both winery and vineyards. It also boasts a lovely museum that delves into the distant past of winemaking, not just for the Guigal family who owns Caveau Du Château, but for the entire region, as far back as the Roman era.
Domaine Du Chêne Vert
For a great all-round experience into the lives of farmers and vintners in this region, Domaine Du Chêne Vert is a fantastic choice for a visit. The estate itself, which sits along the Nyons hills, has been home to twelve generations in total and they produce everything from olive and tomatoes to vinegar and wine Côtes du Rhône. A visit to this wonderful estate is primarily about the experience of taste, enjoying these fresh, natural products, including their “Ancestrale” vintage where the grapes have been farmed using methods of old. When it comes to Côtes Du Rhône wineries, La Vallée de la Gastronomie - France ® strives to find the most enjoyable experiences as well as wineries that produce some of the best Côte du Rhône red wine around, and Domaine Du Chêne Vert is no exception.
There are many great experiences available, and one that is perfect for beginners and aficionados alike is a tour around the Côte-Rôtie Vineyard. Taking a half-day tour around the Côte-Rôtie vineyards and wineries as part of an exclusive group will allow you to receive a great introduction to the production of their wines, as well as a brief history of winemaking in the region. You’ll then be treated to a visit to their renowned wine cellar where you’ll be able to do some taste testing and perhaps even buy a bottle of your favorite. The owners of Côte-Rôtie Vineyard understand the importance of the land around them and will also provide you with a great walk through the vineyards, presenting you with their favorite views too.
Cave Domaine De La Croix Blanche
This wonderful place is perfect for those looking for rustic yet quality Côtes Du Rhône wineries, and this experience should be one to add to the list for your wine-tasting vacation. Once you arrive at Cave Domaine De La Croix Blanche you’ll be able to explore the vineyard by foot or by one of their e-bikes to cover some more ground. You’ll then enjoy some great food and wine and learn about the many organic wines as well as some of their best vintages, for a truly pleasant and unmissable day.
Domaine du Tunnel
A more recent creation in comparison to many of the vineyards around the region, Domaine du Tunnel was created in 1994 by the current owner, Stéphane Robert, as an ageing cellar, away from the hot summer sun. Today, Stéphane has expanded the repertoire of his winery by adding new appellations for a wider range of different amazing wines. As Côtes du Rhône wineries go, this one is a fascinating one, allowing you to not only see modern winemaking at its best but also presenting you with the chance to learn more about the inspiration behind certain wines and the production process from the creator of this winery himself.
Cave Domaine Nicolas Croze
Another fantastic option to visit during your ventures around the French countryside is the quaint Cave Domaine Nicolas Croze. With a heavy focus on environmental respect as well as preserving the history and authenticity of winemaking, this is another one of the finest Côtes du Rhône wineries. A visit to this winery will allow you to taste some wonderful wines, made with hand-picked grapes of all colors, and you’ll also be able to enjoy some of the other natural local products, including honey, jams, and juices. With the wealth of wonderful vineyards in the region, you may not be able to visit all the ones on your list in one go, but that just provides you with the greatest excuse to come back time and time again.