Much larger in scale than Burgundy is the Rhône Valley wine region. From the alcoholic and powerful highs of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, through the dense elegance of the Syrah wines of appellations like Côte-Rôtie and Hermitage, this is predominantly red wine country. Rich and generous, these wines appeal to wine drinkers used to California reds. And, just like Bordeaux, there is also great value to be found in this region: wines labelled Côtes du Rhône. If they have a village name attached (Rasteau and Seguret are among the best), they will be that much better even if more expensive. Search our Rhône Valley wine guide’s hundreds of Rhône Valley wine reviews for more details on individual wines and for our comprehensive database of Rhône Valley wine ratings.
A blend of the typical southern Rhône white grapes, along with some Viognier, this is a full, fat wine, but one which is leavened with delicious fruit flavors and an enticing floral aroma. Drink now.— R.V. (12/31/2006)
For a simple Côtes du Rhône, this blend of 75% Grenache with Syrah is dense, smooth and supple. There are great red fruit flavors and soft tannins. This is ready to drink now, a fine barbecue wine.— R.V. (12/31/2006)
Named after ladybugs and packaged accordingly, this is an all-around good effort. Plum and cherry aromas and flavors are tinged with chocolate, and there’s a supple, creamy texture to the palate. No great intensity or length, just a solid, workaday red at a reasonable price.— J.C. (11/15/2006)
Slightly floral on the nose, then adds apple, mineral and anise on the broad, mouthfilling palate. Tails off a bit on the finish, so catch this wine in its youth, while it’s still fresh.— J.C. (11/15/2006)
Very lively and fresh, packed with bright berry fruit. The tannins are so soft you could easily chill this fruit-juicy red and serve it by the pool or patio with grilled foods.— J.C. (11/15/2006)
This 100% Viognier can’t tout that fact on the label, nor does it flaunt it on the nose, which shows apricot and pear notes but not the bold, floral aromas of the variety. On the palate, it’s medium-bodied, with warm stone fruit flavors and a touch of spice on the finish.— J.C. (11/15/2006)