Drinking and Pairing Northern Rhone with Food

The Northern Rhône is situated along the banks of the Rhône River between the towns of Vienne and Valence in southeastern France. Its geography, soils, and grape varieties make it distinct from the Southern Rhône winegrowing region which is centered on the town of Avignon. The vineyards of the Northern Rhône are planted mostly with Syrah on steep hillsides, but also with some Viognier, Marsanne, and Roussanne for the production of white wines. The red Syrah-based wines of the Northern Rhône are famous for their strength, intensity of fruit, and complexity of character. The appellations of Côte-Rôtie, St-Joseph, Hermitage, and Cornas are all capable of producing red wines of great complexity and long life. The white wines of Condrieu and Château-Grillet are made from the Viognier grape and are tropical, even exotic, often aged in oak. Hermitage, St-Joseph, and the rarely seen St-Péray appellation also produce white wines, but instead from the Marsanne and Roussanne grape varieties.

Pair red Northern Rhône wines with full-flavored game, roasted or grilled meats, and stews. White Northern Rhône wines pair well with rich sauces, white poultry, and some shellfish.

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Northern Rhone pairs well with:

Beef

Black Pepper

South American cuisine

Foods cooked via Roast/Bake

Savory dishes