One of the largest wine zones of the Vaucluse department in the 18th century, Rasteau
was known at the time for its dessert wines. Its dry reds obtained the right to the Côtes du Rhône Villages appellation in 1966, and over time they gradually gained wider recognition, thanks in part to the establishment in 2010 of the sub-appellation Côtes du Rhône Villages Rasteau that recognizes the quality of the local terroir. The delimited zone for these wines covers most of the eponymous village.
The vineyards of Rasteau sit on clay-limestone soils and enjoy a Mediterranean climate. The slopes, which face south, are slightly protected from the Mistral, the famously brutal wind that whips through the Rhône Valley. The sub-appellation covers almost 1,000 hectares (2,471 acres) and produces about 34,000 hectoliters of wine annually.
Red and rosé Rasteau are made from at least 50% Grenache, at least 20% Syrah and/or Mourvèdre, and up to 20% other varieties, including certain white grapes: Grenache, Clairette, Marsanne, Roussanne, Bourboulenc, and Viognier. The white wines are made primarily from Grenache Blanc, Clairette Blanche, Marsanne, Roussanne, Bourboulenc, and Viognier, with small portions permitted of certain other grapes.
Some of Rasteau's best wines are made by producers like Domaine de la Saumade, M. Chapoutier and Domaine Tardieu Laurent.
More informations on the website of the wines of Rasteau