Châteauneuf-du-Pape: A 13-Varietal Symphony

Wine in Provence tours Talks Châteauneuf-du-Pape

Wine in Provence offers  Châteauneuf-du-Pape Wine Tours  from Avignon and Aix en Provence regionsThis gorgeous wine region is our favorite regions to take guests to visit.

For our guests that are fortunate enough to join us in this region and have a keen eye (very few I must admit…especially after a day of wine tasting), they’ll notice this same poster in virtually every single winery’s tasting room.

La symphonie de treize cépages is translated to The symphony of 13 varietals. Châteuneuf-du-Pape is unique in that, for this very tiny region, winemakers can blend using up to 13 different grape varietals! This is incredible when compared to the rest of France’s wine regions who use an average of around 2-4 varietals when blending. And when compared to the U.S. and Australia who mostly do single varietals, this can seem downright bizarre.

But Châteauneuf has a unique micro climate (combined with historical standards that have gone virtually untouched in almost 100 years) that allows all 13 grapes to flourish in this region. Although there are very few wines that are produced with all 13 varietals, most wines still tend to use 6-8 for each blend with the majority almost always being Grenache.

So join us the next time you are in Provence and come experience this true symphony of flavors!

Bonus factoid: Some people in Châteauneuf actually say that 14 varietals are used in Châteauneuf-du-Pape wine. Why 14 and not 13? Well, it depends on if you are counting White Grenache and Red Grenache as separate varietals or not. Some people claim that it’s all just granche (therefore 13 varietals) while others say that the differences are enough to claim it as an entirely separate varietal (therefore 14 varietals total). Where do we stand? We really don’t care! The wine is incredible (and exactly the same) either way!