What is Marsanne?

Marsanne is a white grape variety that is most famous as a major component of the fine, full-bodied wines from the Northern Rhône.

What does Marsanne taste like?

Marsanne tends to produce rich, textured wines of moderate acidity with flavours of honeysuckle, marzipan, apples, and almonds. It can age well, taking on a honeyed, nutty character. In the Rhône appellation of St Péray, Marsanne is often used to make a sparkling wine. Sweet vin de paille expressions are another rare specialism.

Where is Marsanne from?

Marsanne originated in the Rhône, quite possibly in the Drôme village of Marsanne near Montélimar. Although a permitted variety in the Southern Rhône, the grape has long featured especially prominently in the great white wines of the Northern Rhône.

Where does Marsanne grow?

Around 80% of Marsanne’s global plantings are in France, most notably the Northern Rhône but also Southern Rhône and Languedoc. The variety also has a small presence in Switzerland. Since the 1860s Marsanne has grown in the Australian state of Victoria, which today boasts some of this grape variety’s oldest living vines. A small amount of Marsanne is also now found in California.

Famous Marsanne regions:

  • Northern Rhône, France
  • Victoria, Australia

Anything else? 

Marsanne’s full-bodied style is often blended with the aromatic Roussanne, as well as fellow southern French varieties Viognier and Rolle.

Our selection of great Marsanne  

  • Domaine JeanLouis Chave, Northern Rhône, France
  • Michel Chapoutier, Northern Rhône, France
  • Tahbilk, Nagambie Lakes, Australia
  • Qupé, Central Coast, California

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