Rasteau, Is That A Grape?
In a word, no, Rasteau is not a grape. Rasteau is a one of the great villages of the Southern Rhone situated just a few miles east of Cairanne and just 15 miles Northeast of Chateauneuf du Pape. It's technical AOC is Cote du Rhone Village but under French regulations, Rasteau is one of the Villages in Cote du Rhone that is entitled to add their name to the label. While the village does produce tiny amounts of white wine, its red wines can rival many of its southernly rival Chateauneuf du Pape. The main grapes cultivated in the region are Grenache Noir, Grenache Gris, and Grenache Blanc. The reds from Rasteau are almost always 100% Grenache Noir and offer up powerfully, concentrated and heady reds. They generally offer tremendous value when compared to Chateuneuf du Pape. The flavor profiles and quality can be quite similiar but because it doesn't share the same provenance as Chateauneuf du Pape, the prices can be much more advantageous to the thrifty buyer. We like Santa Duc "Les Blovac" and Domaine La Soumade. Both packed with flavor and intensity. Both under $25 per bottle.