Rasteau is located in the north of the Vaucluse department, where most of the vineyards are stuck onto the southern slope. Like Beaume-de-Venise, Rasteau is famous for its vin doux naturel (VDN), a naturally fortified wine. Rasteau was granted cru status for this type of wine in 1944.
Like Beaume-de-Venise, the still red Rasteau wines followed the same trajectory, going from Côtes du Rhône (in 1937) to Village with the village name (in 1966) to cru status (in 2010). The red wines contain at least 50% grenache noir and a minimum of 20% syrah and/or mourvèdre. They are concentrated, distinctive wines, usually with a lot of tannin; in good years they can be kept for up to ten years. The region also produces a limited amount of rosé and white wine, which although definitely interesting, are classified as Côtes du Rhône.
The soil composition is highly diverse: a mixture of clay, chalk, marl and sandstone. A large number of parcels are covered in stones, which is particularly Important for the ripening of the grenache noir. The best vineyards are situated between 300 and 400 metres; the roots here have to reach deep for ground water and therefore come into contact with a variety of soil layers and nutrients. The resulting wines are usually more complex.