It's like Hollywood here, except with more wines.
Gigondas is another AOC wine region, just north of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. The wines are very similar, but being a bigger growing area, they are generally much more affordable to buy. Lots of Syrah and Grenache grapes.
The vines are much taller here as well. We went through a lot of limestone cliffs and big, ragged hills to get here. This part of the world is full of microclimates. In wine, this matters.
I can attest, the soil was full of clay. My dainty mary-janes look rather sloppy now, but I couldn't resit a little stomp through the vineyard.
We did a tasting at Domaine Les Goubert. It's a small, family run property where the family was busily getting things ready for the upcoming season.
The barrels they age in are quite expensive, and most of them are handmade in France with french oak.
The wines here were all quite good, or at least the 10 or so we tried.
It was such a small business, they glued the labels on as you ordered.
I ended up buying an assorted case for not a whole lot of money. You can almost always get a better deal buying direct from the vineyard (a lot of places don't even have distribution, so you have no choice) but having arrived by train, it was difficult to figure out what exactly was back-break worthy.
Wine tasting all day is exhausting. I don't think I've ever done a day-long event before. I know I haven't, and I would probably stick to the half-day next time. I literally got to the point where I could try no more. It wasn't a drunken stupor sort of thing...it was a lot of 1 oz pours that went over the course of an entire day, with a decent lunch thrown in, and I felt fine. Just full of empty calories and, dare I say, toxins. At the end of the day, we had dinner reservations at a place we were hoping to try. As the waiter approached me with the wine menu, I looked in wide-eyed horror. "Non, merci!" I said, much to his bewilderment. I could only hope for water at the end of this day. And a nap. A long, 8 hour nap.