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Comprehensive description of all European growing areas, their grape varieties, traditions and legal rules with maps.

Unfortunately there is no information about Gigondas AOC available.
Gigondas AOC

Description to Gigondas AOC

The AOC area for red wines, rosé wines and white wines is located in the southern section of the Rhône. It is classified as a cru (top appellation). As early as 1924, attempts were made to establish a separate designation of origin. At that time, the wine was still referred to somewhat disparagingly as "Châteauneuf-du-Pape des pauvres" (Châteauneuf-du-Pape of the poor people). It is ready to drink a little earlier than its "big brother", but also counts among the great French red wines. The vineyards cover a total of 2,750 hectares, of which about 1,250 hectares are planted with vines. These are located exclusively in the municipality of Gigondas at the foot of the Dentelles de Montmirail mountain range in the Vaucluse département.

Gigondas - Gemeinde

The name derives from the Latin jucunditas (joy or well-being). This was a small town built by the Romans and was probably a resort. Supposedly, Pliny the Elder (23-79 AD) was already a lover of the wines. In the 1860s, viticulture was significantly revived by the Raspail family, in particular by the lawyer and politician Eugène Raspail (1812-1888). He had inherited the "Domaine Le Colombier" (today's Château Raspail) from his father, acquired the "Domaine des Bosquets" in 1861 and marketed the wines via the port of Roquemaure to merchants from Valence, Lyon, Saint-Étienne and Paris. As a winegrower, his activities created the basis for the area's classification as an appellation in 1971. From the 1870s, the area was severely affected by phylloxera.

Gigondas - Château und Etikett

It was not until the early 1960s that vineyards were again planted on slopes or large terraces. The sloping areas at 300 to 500 metres above sea level consist largely of scree and limestone with a thin layer of clay. The flatter alluvial soils in the plain are interspersed with red clay containing rubble (terre rouge). The climate is Mediterranean, with very warm temperatures in summer, cooled by the cold Mistral fall wind. The red wines with 95% of the production are characterised by a strong, alcoholic and fruity character. They are blended from a maximum of 80% Grenache Noir (Garnacha Tinta), at least 15% Syrah and/or Mourvèdre, as well as all red varieties permitted in the Côtes du Rhône except Carignan Noir (Mazuelo). For rosé, the same applies with less strict rules.

Since vintage 2023, white wines have also been classified as AOC; the areas account for only about 16 hectares. The main variety is Clairette Blanche (Clairette) with at least 70%, but it is also vinified as a single variety. It can be blended with the traditional white wine varieties of the Rhône Valley. These are Bourboulenc, Clairette Rose, Grenache Blanc (Garnacha Blanca), Marsanne, Piquepoul Bl anc and Roussanne, as well as a maximum of 5% Viognier and Ugni Blanc (Trebbiano Toscano).

Well-known producers are Cave des vignerons de Gigondas (winegrowers' cooperative), Château de Montmirail, Château de Saint-Cosme, Château du Trignon, Château Raspail, Château Redortier, Château de Saint-Cosme, Clos du Joncuas, Domaine Amadieu, Domaine La Bouissière, Domaine Brusset, Domaine de Font-Sane, Domaine des Travers, Domaine du Cayron, Domaine du Grand Montmirail, Domaine du Pesquier, Domaine Raspail-Ay, Montirius and Domaine Notre Dame des Pallière.

Gigondas: par Jean-Marc Rosier from rosier, CC BY-SA 3.0, Lien
Château Raspail: by Véronique PAGNIER - Own work, Public domain, Link

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