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L'école des vins
Clairette de Die has since grown to be one of the Drôme Valley’s natural treasures. As well as being the oldest appellation in the Diois, it is also the best known.
Clairette de Die Méthode Ancestrale : the varietal mix is a minimum of 75% white Muscat à petits grains and a maximum of 25% white and pink Clairette and red Muscat à petits grains. Colour ranges from very pale yellow to golden, with a fine, regular bead; aromas are typically of white flowers such as rose, wild briar and honeysuckle with a touch of white fruit. Prise de Mousse occurs spontaneously in-bottle: Fermentation is started slowly to preserve the natural sugars. Before all these sugars turn into alcohol, the wine is transferred into bottles where it is stored for several months. During this time, fermentation continues, prompted by the sugars and yeast naturally present in the grapes. It ceases naturally when abv reaches 7-8%. Méthode Brut: Made with 100 % Clairette grapes, Clairette de Die Brut undergoes a second fermentation, resulting in a very fine mousse which make it pleasantly light and fresh on the palate. The sparkle is bright and clear, the essence of elegance.
Discover the best food and wine pairing in the Rhône Valley. Specialties of the local gastronomy sublimated by wines of the region like Clairette de Die to thrill of pleasure the taste buds of the most greedy.
Vallée du RhôneClairette de Die
Most written evidence agrees that winegrowing in this area dates back to the 2nd century BC. In 70 AD, Roman author Pliny the Elder wrote in his Natural History about the “production of sparkling wine by the Vocontii” - the forefathers of the Diois. Legend has it that the Vocontii would take their jars of wine to the Drome river and leave them submerged for the winter. When they retrieved the jars in spring, they found the contents had turned to a sweet, sparkling liquid - a “precious nectar”. These days we know it as Clairette de Die appellation wine.
The word “clerette” first appeared in 1748 in correspondence from a notary in Châtillon-en-Diois. Over the years, the planted area continued to expand, reaching its peak around the mid-19th century, when the vineyards measured some 6,000 hectares. But around 1870, the phylloxera crisis wiped out up to 80% of plantings and only 1,000 hectares remained. Clairette de Die was originally sold in 220-litre barrels. It was not until 1925 that the format we know today began to appear – glass bottles plugged with natural cork, restrained by a wire muselet. For many years, Clairette wine was confined to its home region. Transportation was difficult in such a mountainous landscape, and wine made by the Ancestral Method could prove unstable. It was finally introduced nationwide when the area opened up in the 19th century, and in 1942, Clairette de Die was awarded AOC status.
These mountain vineyards are some of the highest in France, planted on slopes overlooking the Drôme Valley. The vines growing between 200 and 700 metres above sea level are planted in small plots along the hill- side. The appellation spans 30 villages.
The climate here can be described as Mediterranean, but is also affected by the nearby Vercors Mountains. This balance of the Alpine and the Provençal gives the vines the benefits of warm Mediterranean sunshine coupled with much cooler Alpine temperatures. In summer the days are very hot, and the nights substantially cooler.
The landscape here is very rugged, characterized by the erosion of the Subalpine Chains in the Secondary. High cliff faces surround the area; the soils are made up of matter eroded from these limestone cliffs, combined with black marl formations and chalky clay.
Rendement moyen annuel
1 629 ha
Superficie de production
94 254 hl