Question: What white wine variety in the Northern Rhone style do you prefer?
Answer: Traditionally the viognier grape has been the star in Condrieu showing highly perfumed peach and apricot styling & the even smaller appellation of Chateau Grillet delivering more chardonnay-like fruit but really a unique terroir. It is growing well for Chapoutier in Domaine des Granges de Mirabel in the southern Ardeche and in some regions of the New World. I like the marsanne variety showing rich oily deep textures from old Victorian vines planted by Tahbilk in Australia and the more delicate Road 13 Vineyards one grown in Cawston BC. Rousanne is another variety successful in California with more acidity and aromatics that often is even better when blended with marsanne and viognier. Okanagan Valley is having wonderful success with this 3 grape aromatic blend led by among others Ava of Le Vieux Pin Winery & Afraid of the Dark by Moon Curser Vineyards.
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