10 Sep 2008 by Jancis Robinson

In a nutshell: Concentrated, beefy red wines designed for ageing with increasingly interesting whites.
Grapes: Syrah, Grenache, Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier.

The wide, lazy Rhône links two important French wine regions (and, in narrower, swifter form, the vineyards of Savoie, and some of Switzerland's best). The northern Rhône produces small quantities of some very fine wine indeed, while the much more extensive vineyards of the southern Rhône produce one of France's 'commodity' wines, Côtes du Rhône, as well as a host of other wines based on the Grenache grape.