Emile Loubet, son of a Marsanne wine grower, President of the French Republic
Marsanne is found in the northern Rhône Valley of southeastern France, in Switzerland, and in California. Half of the world’s Marsanne grapes are planted in the Golburn Valley of southeastern Australia. Marsanne's deep colored juice has low acidity, a high level of alcohol, and ages well in oak. It is the major variety used in the production of the famous white Crozes-Hermitage and the sparkling and still St. Péray white wines. Marsanne is often blended with Roussane grapes. Suggested food pairings include Crab and Tomato-based Seafood Stew.
Marsanne wine usually starts at about $10. The French Cave de Tain Crozes-Hermitage is quite good in the $15 range which is mostly Syrah with some Marsanne. It's peppery with a lot of black currant. If you want pure Marsanne go for one from The Australian (Goulburn Valley) winery Tahbilk produces a fine Marsanne starting at about $15. The flavors include lemon, honey, and peach, and as the wine ages honeysuckle aroma and flavor develop. If you can find bottles labeled 1927 Vines don't pass them up, even if you have to pay more than twice the price. These are said to be the oldest Marsanne vines in the world. You are taking a chance on the still St. Peray and we don't recommend the sparkling St. Peray, but some people like it.