6 Unique Wine Excursions in the Rhône Valley Slideshow
September 25, 2013
These interesting trips within France's Rhône Valley will leave you a little more in tune with French wines
Create Your Own Wine at Maison Lavau
If you really want to understand what goes into a Rhône Valley red, there’s no better way than making one yourself. At the Maison Lavau, visitors can attend make-your-own wine workshops. Winemakers lead groups of two to six in two-hour winemaking sessions, teaching the crucial differences between the key regional grapes syrah and grenache, as well as the basic principles of how to blend each grape variety to achieve the perfect balance between fruit and tannin. At the end of your lab-tasting session, you’ll leave with a bottle of your very own cru.
Price: €30 per person
Stay On a Vineyard at Domaine de Provensol
Husband-and-wife team Dominique and Dominique left Paris 12 years ago to pursue their dream of winemaking, opening a winery and bed-and-breakfast at Domaine de Provensol. Nestled on a vineyard at the foot of the Mont Ventoux, each visitor at the B&B is invited to engage in the entire winemaking process, from harvest to table. Guests can observe the harvest during peak season, sample the wines straight from the barrels to understand the fermentation process, and taste the wines while dining with the winemakers themselves at Provensol’s familial table.
Price: €105 to €155 per night
Pair Wine in Innovative Ways at La Maison des Vins Workshops
Inter Rhône, the regional wine tourism chapter, hosts monthly wine tastings in Avignon for those who want to go beyond the basics. Inter Rhône invites top sommeliers and chefs to guide visitors in thematic wine tastings. Themes in the past have included blind tastings, pairings with truffles or shellfish, and wine and dessert nights. Note: It helps to have a little French under your belt for these workshops.
Price: €25 per person
Tour a Wine Village Via Segway at Domaine Rozel
Domaine Rozel is located in Valaurie, an ancient village on a steep hillside overlooking expansive vineyards. To get the full scenic view of the property, Rozel offers guided Segway tours of the village and vineyards followed by a wine tasting back at the cellar. Groups are small and individual instruction is offered for those who are unfamiliar with riding a Segway.
Price: €35 per person
Explore Vineyards on a Mo-ped with Cave TerraVentoux
There’s no better way to discover a winery than wandering through the vineyards, and TerraVentoux guides visitors on a personal tour of the terroir via mo-ped. The winemaker meets you at three different stages of the tour for a wine tasting and picnic of regional foods, along with conversation of this wine cooperative’s rich legacy.
Price: €29 per person
Picnic Among the Vines at Domaine de Marotte
Wine picnics may be common in the growing landscape of wine tourism, but few come with the personal touch found at Domaine de Marotte. Visitors can taste the wines with winemaker Daan Dijkman, and then choose a bottle to drink along with a picnic of regional specialties prepared by his wife Elvira. Guests can enjoy their pique-nique vigneron anywhere on the property and linger for as long as they’d like. For families, Domaine de Marotte has designed interactive games and activities for children to discover the grape harvest.
Price: €22.50 per person