French Wine Guide: History, Regions, Types, And More

French Wine Guide:

History, Regions, Types, And More

Why do we love France that much? Well, there are a lot of things: movies, food, sightseeing, language… However more famous than the Eiffel tower and incredible movies can be only French wine. Yes, exactly! 

French wine is famous throughout the world due to its fantastic taste and relatively affordable prices. It seems like France’s culture and its wine are inseparable notions. We’ll not be surprised to know that French people have red wine flowing into their veins instead of blood. 

Jokes aside! We all know that French wine is one of the best, but it’s still an enigma for a lot of us. But don’t worry, this French wine guide will help you sort things out. Check it out! 

French wine is famous throughout the world due to its fantastic taste and relatively affordable prices. It seems like France’s culture and its wine are inseparable notions. We’ll not be surprised to know that French people have red wine flowing into their veins instead of blood.
Jokes aside! We all know that French wine is one of the best, but it’s still an enigma for a lot of us. But don’t worry, this French wine guide will help you sort things out. Check it out!

A Brief French Wine History

 

French winemaking has a long-standing history. Starting in the 6th century BC, vast planting of French vineyards had begun in the 300s, when Romans came to the territory. And since these old days, French winemaking has been flourishing. 

Although in the 19th century, Phylloxera and mildew destroyed a lot of vineyards, they were replanted. Two world wars and an economic downturn has also impacted the winemaking business in France. But France seems to have a strong liaison with wine. Nothing could prevent coming out of this tasty liquid! 

So the modern French wine industry, as we know, takes its roots in 1970 with the help of huge investment.

Modern French wines | MER

4 Types of French Wine

 

Though there is a variety of French wine brands, there are only four major types of wine in France. Let’s get acquainted with them! 

  • Appellation d’origine contrôlée (AOC) 

Now, it’s Appellation d’origine protégée (AOP). The production of this category of wines adheres to a rigorous set of defined standards. They are made of traditional and aged high-quality ingredients and only in specific designated geographical areas. 

  • Appellation d’Origine Vin De Qualité Supérieure (AOVDQS)

If we imagine these four types of French wine as a hierarchy, AOVDQS goes right under AOC. These wines are also made of high-quality ingredients, but the set of standards it adheres is a bit milder.

  • Vin de pays

In translation, it means “wines of a country.” Almost every wine that France produces and that doesn’t fall under the AOC category can be vin de pays. The requirements for the grape type and production methods of this category are lenient compared to two previous ones.  

  • Vin de table

This is the lowest category of French wines. There are no rules and no standards. You’re not likely to see some vintage wines or best French wine among vin de table, but they are still good. 

Types of French Wine | MER

7 Top French Wine Regions And Their Best Wines

 

Different regions mean different wine. You may already know that different grape varieties grow in different France regions, and even other manufacturing techniques are used. If you know which type of French wine is made in one or another area, picking up wines for your home collection will become more successful. So here we go! 

  • Languedoc-Roussillon (528,000 Acres)

White wines: Chardonnay, Grenache Blanc, Marsanne, Roussanne

Red wines: Grenache, Syrah, Carignane, Cinsaut

  • Bordeaux (306,000 Acres)

White wines: Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon, Muscadelle

Red wines: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Malbec

  • Rhône Valley (188,700 Acres)

White wines: Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier

Red wines: Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre

Top French Wines | MER

  • Loire Valley (158,000 Acres)

White wines: Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Melon de Bourgogne

Red wines: Cabernet Franc, Cot

  • Burgundy (125,000 Acres)

White wines: Chardonnay

Red wines: Pinot Noir, Gamay

  • Champagne (75,000 Acres)

White wines: Chardonnay

Red wines: Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier

  • Alsace (34,000 Acres)

White wines: Riesling, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc

Red wines: Pinot Noir

Best Wines of French Regions | MER

The Most Frequently Asked Questions About French Wines 

 

Why is France a country of wine

Due to the favorable climate, soil, and historical events, France has become a perfect place for planting grapes and creating many vineyards. Since the country has started wine-making a long time ago, they are masters in that business. Thus, French wine brands get global recognition. But not only other countries are fond of French wine, the very French people enjoy drinking their divinely tasteful wines! 

Do French people drink much wine?

It’s the most logical question after getting to know that wine is so inseparable from French culture. With such a reputation, it’s nothing but easy to assume that French people drink all the time. And it’ll be the truth! 

The French population is responsible for drinking about 11% (26.5 million hectoliters) of the world’s wine. Just imagine that amount of wine! It makes the country the second leading wine-consuming country after the US. 

Of course, they do! They have tons of the best French wine right at their homes. It happens because French people lead quite a hedonistic life, and wine is an epitome of such a life. Besides, TV commercials, billboards, and ads communicate wine’s importanc

How much wine do the French drink?

What do French people prefer to eat with wine?

For French people, the principal rule is not to drink wine on its own. Never! They like to accompany it with a variety of food. That’s why France doesn’t have any problems with alcoholism.

The perfect choices are dishes with meat and cheese, such as a cheese plate or a full-blown meal. It hits the spot! Sweet French wine tastes fantastic with all kinds of meat, while white wine perfectly goes with chicken or fish. What is peculiar about French wine pairings: if you mix things up, a wine will still have a divine taste.

Making an art out of wine tasting in France, the population enjoys this drink by having BBQ in their backyard, savoring delicious meals, and observing the sunset. Not only wine flows into their veins but romanticism!

Have you known these facts about France as a wine country?

As Germany is famous for its good beers, France pleases the world with exceptional wines. Every time you imagine a French person, you see someone who is holding a glass of wine. We know some famous French wines, but you should get acquitted to the essentials to enjoy French wine like a local.

So now, when you’ve read this article and know a lot of new stuff about French vineyards, history, wine regions, let’s pick up a good French wine to celebrate this day. À votre santé!

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