- an appellation in the Rhône valley, southern France, near Avignon. This area produces very high-quality red wines that rely mainly on the Grenache grape variety, but, unusually, the rules for the appellation allow another 12 grape varieties to be grown and used within the AOC. The region also produces a small quantity of white wine from the Grenache Blanc, Bourboulenc, and Clairette Blanc grapes. estate bottled wines display the coat of arms of the Pope on the label of the bottle (the name means ‘the Pope’s new castle’). In the 1920s the area was the first to implement a set of rules to regulate the wine production process. These rules were then used as the basis of the Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée system implemented across France.