Do you have a question for Dr. Vinny? Ask it here...
Dear Dr. Vinny,
Is it political, geographical or otherwise that the Syrah grape is the dominant grape variety in the northern reaches of the Rhône Valley, and falls to a lesser role in the southern region of the Rhône river?
—Ron, Wilmington, Del.
Uh, is this part of the SAT test? Just kidding. Anyway, I checked with Wine Spectator senior editor James Molesworth, who covers the Rhône, and here's his response:
"Geographical. It's too hot in most of the Southern Rhône for Syrah. It's generally said that just around the town of Orange is the northern limit for Mourvèdre to ripen, and the southern limit for Syrah to maintain its freshness. Grenache is far better suited to the Southern Rhône's hot, Mediterranean climate."
Learn from the experts and get the most out of each sip. Take one of our online courses or take them all—from the ABCs of Tasting to in-depth seminars on Food Pairing, California Cabernet, Bordeaux, Tuscany, Sensory Evaluation and more.