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Sun-drenched hillsides, the heady scents of the garrigue and a bubbling river which changes its spelling at will...

Cairanne is a delightful village set on a rocky outcrop, offering visitors an irresistible range of luscious red and white wines.

There is plenty to love about Cairanne, not least its community spirit, nurtured by generations of winemakers, its hot, dry weather and its fruity, elegant wines. It’s also the gateway to the southern Rhône, combining the typically northern Syrah grape with the much more southern Grenache and Mourvèdre.


Varietals & flavours

Reds: Grenache makes up at least 50% of any red blend. Syrah and Mourvèdre (20% minimum) are very much at home here, and Cinsault and Carignan give a good balance of acidity to alcohol, but may not exceed 30% of any blend.

Cairanne’s red wines are full of red fruit flavours and spice, with smooth, velvety tannins and an elegant, balanced, complex finish. Whites: 30% minimum of Clairette, with 20% of white Grenache and/or Roussanne. Other auxiliary varietals, including Bourboulenc, Viognier, Marsanne and Piquepoul, may also be added. Grenache gives power and structure, while Clairette and Roussanne add elegant aromas and freshness, making Cairanne white wines pleasingly well-balanced with a naturally floral, fruity character.

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Birth of AOC Cairanne

In 1929, a small group of winegrowers, including a Monsieur Rieu who fervently supported Baron Leroy’s ideas, came together to plan for their future. They set themselves a number of goals, aiming to protect their winegrowing interests, achieve AOC status and promote the village wines. That same year, Cairanne set up its own cooperative cellar, and the Syndicat Général des Vignerons des Côtes du Rhône was founded.

In 1953, Cairanne’s winegrowers were permitted to add the village name to their Côtes du Rhône wines, then later in 1967, their wines were officially awarded Côtes du Rhône Villages Cairanne status. Still keen to improve quality, Cairanne applied in 2008 for standalone Cru status. This has now been granted, and on 29th June 2016, Cairanne officially became a Cru of the Côtes du Rhône.



The village of Cairanne lies in the north west of Vaucluse, just a stone’s throw from the former papal enclave at Avignon, on the borders of the Drôme department. This single village makes up the entire appellation.


The climate here is Mediterranean – dry with plenty of sunshine – and heavily influenced by the Mistral wind, which gusts through the vineyards, helping the grapes stay healthy all year round.


A particular geology

The 1,088-hectare terroir comprises 3 distinct areas, each contributing its own character to Cairanne’s complex, elegant wines. These are: The terraces of the Aygues to the west of the village, made up of pebbles, clay and fine sand. The sandy subsoils promote fine- grained tannins in the wines, giving them finesse and a fresh lightness; Miocene slopes to the north of the village, the Montagne du Ventabren, make up one of Cairanne’s major terroirs. Erosion has cut into the mass of limestone pebbles with the occasional vein of flint alternating with Miocene marl; the soils here give the wine an aroma of black fruit and spice, with plenty of complexity and freshness. Garrigue scrubland to the south of the village, comprising stony, alluvial soils over a bed of fine-grained matter, dating from the Tertiary. This sunny, windswept plateau gives the balanced conditions needed to produce sun-drenched, generous wines with flavours of ripe fruit and spices.

Key figures

Key figures of the appellation

96% red
4% white


27 hl/ha

Rendement moyen annuel

846 ha

Superficie de production

23 020 hl

Production totale



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