Area named after the commune of the same name in the southern section of the Rhône wine-growing region. The vineyards cover around 900 hectares of vines, mainly in the municipality of Rasteau, but also partly in the municipalities of Cairanne and Sablet in the department of Vaucluse. In terms of classification, a distinction must be made between red wines (AOC and Cru only since the 2009 vintage), white wines and rosés (both marketed as Côtes du Rhône-Villages ) and Vin doux naturel (AOC since 1944). The climate is Mediterranean in character, with the frequent mistral causing sensitive cooling. The areas of the high-class wines are south-facing and shielded from the mistral. The vineyards are located on the slopes of the Montagne de Ventabren on soils of pebbles and greyish limestone with a base of reddish clay.
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