Chateau de Pibarnon Bandol Rouge 2010
About the Region
The wine regions of Provence cover a large area of southeastern France, along the Mediterranean coast, from the edge of Arles to Nice and up into the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence beyond Fourcalquier. The major sub-divisions are Côtes de Provence, Coteaux d'Aix-en-Provence, Les Vaux-de-Provence, Bandol, Cassis, and Coteaux Varois. There are said to be more than 1,000 wine types made in the region, white, red, and rosé. The main grape for red and rosé is mourvèdre, but there is a good amount of grenache and (especially for rosé) cinsault. Cabernet sauvignon and syrah are increasingly planted, but are not traditional in the region. White wines are made from such Rhône varieties as grenache blanc, marsanne, rousanne, viognier, clairette, muscat, and bourboulenc, with rolle (the French name for vermentino) in the Bellet appellation around Nice. Chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, and sémillon are used in non-traditional cuvées. The climate in Provençal vineyards is definitively Mediterranean, with many microclimates, especially in more mountainous areas. Soil types vary greatly, and include limestone, shale, sandstone, and clay. Wines from this region express many different styles, but in general are ripe, aromatic, and full-bodied. They frequently have an herbaceous character, which romantics imagine is derived from the proximity of wild herbs like rosemary and lavender to the vineyards.