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There are plenty of excellent wine-producing countries. But none have -- or likely, will ever have -- the reputation that France has. This is the country that virtually always sits atop the “Best Wine Producing Country,” the one that is responsible for a staggering 30% of wine exports each year. Indeed, if people were asked to name three things that they associate with France, they would likely answer “cheese, bread, and wine.” Wine is so ingrained in the culture of the country that we could write an entire book on the subject, but in lieu of that, we’ll do the next best thing and run you through the essentials.
There are many reasons why French wine is so good, including the fact that they’ve been producing it for such a long time. With more than 2600 years of wine production under their belts, the French have certainly had plenty of time to figure out what they’re doing. As with most things from that period, we have the Romans to thank for the development of viticulture in France.
The wine industry has always been hugely important to France. Today, France is considered the world’s best wine producer.
France dedicates a lot of their land to the production of wine. Indeed, there are some two million hectares of vineyards across the country. Most of the vineyards are located in the north and the south; the north is known for their whites, the south for their reds.
The most famous wine region in France is Bordeaux. Actually, forget being most famous in France; this is likely the most famous in the world.
Burgundy, located in the east of France, is another big hitter. Somewhat unusually, this region is known for both red and whites, without one being more celebrated than the other.
The Loire Valley produces outstanding wines in a stunning environment, which makes it particularly popular with wine-loving travellers. And then there’s Champagne, the French region closely associated with good times and celebrations. There are many more regions in France, but these are the most famous!
French grapes are famous the world over, with many forming not only the basis of French wines but wines produced across the globe.
You can generally split French grapes into three categories of variety: Bordeaux, White, and Red.
The harvest, or la vendange, takes place over the course of two months, usually from late August to October. The majority of towns in wine regions host festivals at this period, making it a particularly excellent time to visit.
There are too many excellent wines from France to mention here. But if you’re looking for a taste of French vin, then why not try one of these great wines from our collection:
French Wine makes up a large part of our online collection, so you can head over to our dedicated French Wine page to find a great selection.
Find out more about other wine producing countries: