Earlier this month, the INAO approved a new AOC in the southern Rhône, to be known as AOC Cairanne. Winemakers are expected to be able to use the designation starting with the 2015 vintage.
Carianne was formerly one of the 18 villages that were entitled to append the name of their village onto the Côtes du Rhône-Villages designation. The region is known for red, white, and rosé wines produced from the typical blend of southern Rhône varieties (min. 50% Grenache + min. 20% combined Syrah/ Mourvèdre for reds and rosés; min. 80% any blend of Grenache blanc, Clairette, Marsanne, Roussanne, Bourboulenc, or Viognier for the whites.)
The new AOC regulations will require hand harvesting and sorting either in the vineyard or the winery, and a organics-level maximum level of added sulfites. With this change, there are now 17 subzones approved as geographical indications within the Côtes du Rhône-Villages AOC. For the record, they are: Chusclan, Gadagne, Laudun, Massif d’Uchaux, Plan de Dieu, Puymeras, Roaix, Rochegude, Rousset-les-Vignes, Sablet, Saint-Gervais, Saint-Maurice, Saint-Pantaléon-les-Vignes, Séguret, Signargues, Valréas, and Visan.