The appellation - area and rules

The borders of the appellation was pointed out by the local wine growers in the 1920s and was legally decided in court in 1933.
1 Maj 1936 the general rules for the appellation was confirmed by INAO, Institut National des Appellations d'Origine.

You can eventually read more about the creation of the appellation here
Area of production

The appellation includes nearly all land in Chateauneuf du Pape and parts of four other communes: Orange, Courthezon, Bedarrides, Sorgues. The table below shows the area in the five communes.
Click and discover (in French)

At the mayor's office in each commune detailed maps of all included parcels are to be seen on maps. There have not been changes of the area since 1933. Nearly all cutivailable land inside the apellation is today planted with vines. Therefore you will not see much change in the area of production - nearly 3200 hectares.

The allowed grapes

It's always said that the appellation has 13 allowed grape varieties: Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, Picpoul, Terret Noir, Counoise, Muscardin, Vaccarèse, Picardan, Cinsault, Clairette, Roussanne, Bourboulenc. It has to be noticed, that Grenache an Picpoul exists in two different varieties white and red. More about the grapes here.


The pruning method goblet are the only authorized for Grenache Noir, Mourvèdre, Picpoul Noir and Terret Noir.
Goblet or bilateral cordon de royat trained with two wires are authorized for Grenache Blanc, Picpoul Blanc, Picardan, Clairette, Roussanne, Bourboulenc, Muscardin, Vaccarèse, Cinsaut and Counoise.
For Syrah may be used goblet, bilateral cordon de royat or guyot with a long fruiting cane, with max. 8 eyes.

Plantation - density

Minimum 3000 plants per hectare. Maximum 2,5 m between rows.


Irrigation is not allowed generally. Although it's allowed for young vines not yet in production. 
In case of very special dry conditions INAO can allow irrigation in limited periods.

Alcohol degree

Minimum alcohol percent is 13,5 for both white and red wines. Chaptalization is not alloved.


Only red and white wines can be made (excluding rosé wine).
The wine must be made in accordance to local traditions, honest and constant
with perfectly healthy grapes.
During the harvest insufficiently ripe, damaged or sick parts will have to be removed as a preliminary for the development of the râpé 1).
(Obligatory sorting)

Grapes from young wines can only be used after three years of age. 

The rosy, stained or faded wines, the damaged or sick wines and the wines with les than 0,90 grams of volatile acidity lose the right to the controlled label of origin.

The basic maximum output is 35 hectolitre per hectar.
This basic output can, for a determined harvest, on proposal of the federation of the producers of wines of Châteauneuf-of-Pope and taking into account the quality and of the quantity of this harvest, be lowered or increased, but can never be more than 42 hectolitres per hectare of vines in production râpé included.

Any wine grower is imposed to produce, a percentage of "râpé", variable between 5 and 20 % of the quantities asserted to be Châteauneuf du Pape. The office of the federation of the producers of wines of "Châteauneuf du Pape" fixes each year the imposed minimum percentage.

If a producer goes beyond of the annual output or don't respect the rules for râpé he will lose the right to produce "Châteauneuf-du-Pape".

1) Râpé: wine made of discarded grapes.

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