The Rhône Valley in France is one of the larger quality wine producing regions in the world allowing plantings of 22 different grape varieties. The continental climate and the steep, granitic and schistose slopes of the Northern Rhône shape the Syrah-dominant reds of the prestigious Hermitage AOP and Côte-Rôtie AOP. These meaty, spicy and complex wines are some of the highest priced and top rated wines in our Rhône Style Red Blend Ratings. And while red production rules here, the white wines of the region deserve mention too: The Condrieu AOP offers beautiful wines based on the floral and exotic Viognier grape, while the Marsanne and Roussanne varieties are the force behind the age-worthy Hermitage blanc. In the Southern Rhône, no longer are there steep hillsides and a continental climate. Instead, the land becomes quite flat and the climate far more Mediterranean. Unlike the Northern Rhône where Syrah is the dominant varietal, Grenache plays the star role in the Southern Rhône Red Blends with Syrah and Mourvèdre playing supporting roles. The “GSM” blends from the south span the spectrum of ripe and jammy to rustic and earthy, with the wines of Châteauneuf du Pape representing the best examples. Due to the popularity and success of these blends, many countries have mimicked this formula with their own twist. California’s version tends to favor the New World palate with its fruit-packed renditions. Australia, too, is another GSM proponent offering both Northern and Southern Rhône styles. With the burly structures and bold flavors these red blends offer, grilled red meat and roasted game make for the perfect pairing. Be sure to view our buying guide and check out some of our Top Rated Rhône Style Red Blends.