What Is Chateauneuf du Pape, And Why It is So Good
We all know that France can, and has, created some stunning wines over the last few centuries, but most people are only familiar with the most popular few, such as Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Sauvignon Blanc.
Chateauneuf de Pape is an incredibly small, yet very beautiful, village in the Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur region in southeastern France, within which sits a massive, ruined Medieval castle from the 14th century.
The wonderful attribute of this tiny village is the fact that almost all of its cultivable land is planted with grapevines, specifically for the namesake red wines that even Pope John XII was a fan of. Grenache is the most dominant varietal, covering almost 80% of the area’s vineyards, followed by Syrah.
Almost all of the vineyards in the region are farmed biodynamically, or organically, which means the radiant sunshine and constant winds prevent the need for chemical pesticides and herbicides.
Although there are a variety of red grapes planted here, they all share the common flavor characteristics of dark fruits like black and red cherries, black raspberries, as well as notes of black pepper and spice.
Because of the lush, luxurious fruit-forward flavors and spicy quality of the wines of this region, the best food pairings are hearty, spicy meat-oriented dishes.