Game of Thrones is back, and I think it may be giving Scandal a run for its money in the grape department. And although we never really know what Olivia Pope is drinking, I’m not even going to try to figure out what’s in Game‘s medieval goblets.
So let’s just pretend it’s all Rhone varietals, based on this awesome event I heard about!
Game of Rhones is a wine showdown that takes place in Australia. They describe it as “a combative celebration of the classic grape varieties of the Rhone Valley in France. Think Shiraz, Grenache, Mourvedre, Carignan, Cinsault, Viognier, Marsanne and Roussanne to name a mere few.” Oh I will think about those grapes, and I will be happy because I love them all.
The Rhone Valley is split into two parts: the north, which is all Syrah (called Shiraz in Australia) for red wine and Viognier for the white which is often added to the Syrah to give some delicateness; and the south which is blend land: my favorite is Chateauneuf du Pape which allows 13 grapes to be in the blend but is usually mostly Greneache, Syrah and Mourvedre (lovingly referred to as “GSM”). But on their own, the white varietals like Grenache Blanc, Roussanne, and Viognier are refreshingly light and incredible for spring.
This is the second year they’re doing Game of Rhones. They have a huge tasting with over 40 producers and 100 wines, mostly from Australia but also New Zealand, France’s Rhone Valley (the original), the US, and others. Everyone goes around tasting all the wines amid people dressed in suits of armor, suckling pig, and a Torture Room for blind tasting (HA – blinding is torture because you think you’re going to do ok but inevitably you suck at it).
“Is there one wine to rule them all? What grape variety will it be?” After a ton of tasting, everyone then votes for their favorite via iPad (which feels about as un-medieval as you can get). I’m all for anything that gets people drinking more Rhone varietals which are awesome. Plus, it gives a whole new meaning to Red Wedding.