Maison Brotte was one of the first chateaux in Chateauneuf-du-Pape to go completely organic and sustainable. The name, Viridi, means "green" in Latin, a suitable designation for this selection.
We always love getting a Cotes du Rhone from top Chateauneuf-du- Pape producers because French wine laws almost guarantees that some of those precious Chateauneuf grapes make it into the Cotes du Rhone. The laws are meant to keep production down, which in most cases produces better quality. But, sometimes those maximums are too low.
For instance, let's say the law is that on an acre of land you can't produce more than 2,500 liters of wine, which comes out to around four tons to the acre, a very reasonable amount. But sometimes Mother Nature gives you more than that and the grapes are all perfect. What does the producer do?
Well, if the producer got 3,200 liters of wine, 2,500 liters is labeled Chateauneuf and the other 700 is labeled Cotes du Rhone. That is equivalent to about 70 cases of wine. If you have 50 acres that now becomes 3,500 total cases of Cotes du Rhone that is really Chateauneuf, which sells for three to four times the price.
There is also a stipulation that they can't say it's overproduction of Chateauneuf, which suits us just fine. This heavily Grenache based beauty with the dark color and flavors of raspberries and licorice could easily be confused with the higher priced wine, but pairing it with cassoulet or roast duck would make all the comparisons vanish.