The longer days and higher temperatures of Southern France give the grapes and resulting wines more colour and extract than those from more northerly regions of France. The red grapes include Syrah, Grenache, Cinsault and Mourvedre, and the whites (which are fewer) include Viognier, Marsanne and Roussanne. The reds are generally robust and jammy, often peppery and earthy, while the whites can be full-bodied, nutty and peachy. They reflect the warm southern temperatures and match the weight and richness of the local foods – and this, the Mediterranean, is the land of olives, lentils, herbs and garlic. Exceptions exist now, but these wines owe their style more to modern winemaking techniques and a quest for the current market`s desire for alternative grape varieties and freshness. Other wine producers, in Rhone “Delas”for example, extend their long arms outside the traditional “terroir” to produce traditional country wines in the style of their own, for less money: Delas Syrah in Ardeche, for instance, suited to Mediterranean foods and excellent value. Often described as Vin de Pays, the trick in choosing a good one is to look first at the producer name on the label. Francois Villard imitates his expensive Condrieu by sourcing Viognier from outside Rhone (still not cheap, it is quite remarkable), elsewhere the Burgundy house Louis Latour produces the excellent Valmoissine Pinot Noir which we ship in magnums now selling at £25.00. The boundaries of the traditional “terroir” are breaking all around us. And hitherto expensive tastes are being imitated under the guise of the French country Vin de Pays description.