Domaine Les Grands Bois, Côtes-du-Rhône Viognier 2018


'I thought that the very best Viognier (and the most expensive) came from the Northern Rhône but, having had a bottle of Domaine Les Grand Bois from the Southern Rhône for dinner last night, I am not so sure. The wine is rich, full bodied with loads of character & just the right amount of crisp minerality. We were eating a delicious sea trout and when I asked everyone if they wanted more – all replied yes – they were referring to the wine not the fish! My wife (the cook) took it all in good spirits!

I don’t always agree with Robert Parker who described this as the best value Viognier he has ever tasted – he is spot on here for a wine that merits a £20+ price tag – not a mere £11.95.'

Esme Johnstone, Founding Partner

A delicious Viognier from the Southern Rhône. Robert Parker described it as “maybe the finest value in Viognier that I have ever tasted.” Domaine Les Grands Bois, producers of our best selling red, only make very small volumes meaning that their wines are concentrated and packed with character. The result is a sophisticated, floral wine with fantastic minerality and depth.


Our Tasting Notes

Golden yellow in colour. An intense floral nose with hints of pear, peach and apricot. Fresh, with lots of fruit but also a crisp minerality and a long full finish. Producers Mireille and Marc Besnardeau recommend it with roast pigeon or guinea fowl with prunes with morel cream sauce.

Wine Data

Grape variety: Grenache, Viognier
Appellation: Côtes-du-Rhône
Alcohol: 14.5%


The Domaine Les Grands Bois is located in the heart of the Southern Rhône. The vineyard has been producing high quality wines since 1920 and Marc and Mireille Besnardeau continue this tradition. The vines grow in chalky clay soil.


(Wine of the Week) “Ok, rule book out of the window! This lusty, ripe, alluring Viognier—the white, not red, that you need with the smoked ham and barley soup. You will not find a better team, this week than this partnership.”- Matthew Jukes, Daily Mail (previous vintage)

“As readers have undoubtedly noted from previous reports on southern Rhones and best values, Domaine Les Grands Bois's proprietor, Marc Besnardeau, is at the top of his game, producing a bevy of wines that represents great value and over-delivers in every category. It seems like whatever Besnardeau fashions is well above its humbe pedigree and modest price. These 2009s and 2010s are the estate's finest effort since the brilliant 2007s.” - Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate (previous vintage)

“90 Points—may be the finest value in Viognier that I have ever tasted. Made from tiny yields of 20 hectoliters per hectare this wine’s extraordinary minerality was an unexpected surprise as I was expecting a tutti-fruity, plump white. Instead I got a classic Viognier exhibiting lots of floral, apricot, and peach notes intermixed with a crushed-rock like character as well as good acidity.” - Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate (previous vintage)

“A winner, the 2010 Côtes-du-Rhône Viognier was fashioned from 10 to 60 year old Viognier vines cropped at a remarkably low 20 hectolitres per hectare. Explosive aromas of dried apricots, white peach and honeysuckle soar from the glass of this medium bodied, crisp, dry, refreshing authentic Viognier. It is difficult to believe that anyone can produce such a good Viognier (a somewhat tricky varietal) at this price ” - Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate on 2010 vintage (previous vintage)