Exploring France through its famous wine regions

There’s a famous quote by Rumi that best describes the importance of a fine wine, “Either give me more wine or leave me alone”

Only a true connoisseur of wine would connect to this saying and only a true lover of wine would know the real worth of a French wine. France, besides being famous for its rich culture, age-old traditions and grand architecture, the country is globally renowned for its wine. The world swears by French wines and every region here produces its own beverage. So let’s take a trip to some famous French vineyards that will tell you everything to plan your vineyard trip in France.

Wine of Provence

Your French vineyard tour won’t be complete without tasting the wine of Provence. This breathtaking French region is just a few hours drive from Nice and is known for producing some fantastic wines. This entire territory is dotted with vineyards and one can also enjoy wine tasting experiences here. The warm climate and the region’s proximity to the sea makes it a perfect place for grapes plantation. Syrah, Cabernet, Sauvignon, Cinsault and Clairette are some of the best wine brands here.

Wine of Loire ValleyCredit: iStock

Wine of Loire Valley

Loire Valley is another famous wine producing region in France. Some of the popular vineyards here are located in Anjou-Saumur, Touraine, The Pays Nantais and Central Vineyards. Loire Valley wines are light and that’s what makes them so popular. One can choose from a stunning selection of red wines, white wines and sweet roses.

Wine of Burgundy Credit: iStock

Wine of Burgundy

Burgundy is a historical French territory famous for its vineyard regions. The wine regions of Burgundy include Côte de Nuits, Châblis, Côte de Beaune, Côte Chalonnaise and Beaujolais, to name a few. The wine produced in this region is considered complex, which makes it very expensive. The region also produces some amazing white wines made from Chardonnay, and red wines made from Pinot Noir.

Wine of Bordeaux Credit: iStock

Wine of Bordeaux

A wine lover’s list of favorite wines won’t be complete without mentioning Bordeaux wine. Counted among the most famous and also the largest wine regions in France, Bordeaux is the world capital of wine! Situated in Southern France along the sea, the wine produced here tastes unique as it comes mixed with mineral qualities.

Rhone Valley wineCredit: iStock

Rhone Valley wine

Another popular wine region in France is the Rhone Valley in Southeastern France. The region is spread across the meandering Rhone River and the wines produced here are the most expensive one. The Rhone Valley wine is known as Côtes du Rhône wine and some of the prominent products here include Grenache Blanc, Marsanne and Viognier.

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My Totally Racous, Très French, Super Wine-Soaked Weekend in the Loire

At an epic gathering of natural winemakers in France’s verdant river valley, I slurped oysters and downed magnums and got a sense of what makes this community, and its wine, so special.

Let’s get one thing straight: I know very little about wine. I drink a lot of it,
sure—the natural stuff more specifically, which as far as I understand it is a loose, poorly defined term that more or less refers to wine made by small producers without the addition of weird chemicals and with the addition of eye-catching labels. But compared with the friends and sommeliers whose oenological ramblings I excitedly nod along to, I often feel like a poseur. I know my way around a wine list, but at the end of the day, I’m a sucker for bottle art. I will always order the hypebeast wine I recognize from Instagram. I use the word funky too often. My wife, Lauren, and I went to a hip wine fair once and bought a poster we had seen in hip wine bars and hip wine stores because we thought it looked cool, not because we knew anything about “Catherine et Pierre Breton,” the French winemakers whose names were scrawled across the bottom. It hangs above our dining room table, and when we’re having our Wine Friends over, I’m always nervous someone will ask me about it, the same way 13-year-old me prayed older kids wouldn’t see my Sex Pistols T-shirt and ask questions about a song that wasn’t on the greatest hits album.

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A fantastic French red for just $15 a bottle 

RECOMMENDED | It’s from the Anjou, a region not usually associated with quality, but it is great.

We usually don’t expect red wines from Anjou, a small subregion of France’s Loire Valley, to be any good, but here’s an example that will persuade even the most cynical wine skeptic to scour store shelves for obscure wines. I also recommend a refreshing New Zealand sauvignon blanc, a Tavel rosé to enjoy year-round, a lively California chardonnay and a second label from a popular Bordeaux chateau.

GREAT VALUE
Musset-Roullier Les Neuf Vingt “La Maturité de la Passion” Anjou Rouge 2014/2015

Loire Valley, France, $15

I’m on my soapbox here. There are some wines we simply refuse to believe in because they don’t come from high-profile regions with pedigrees and points. Anjou, in France’s Loire Valley, is known for light, insipid reds or rosés. But this wine should grab our attention. It’s 100 percent cabernet franc, the main red grape of the Loire, and yes, lighter in depth and body than more famous Loire appellations such as Chinon, Saumur or Bourgeuil. Aromatic with spicy white pepper and Bing cherry notes, it develops more complexity about 30 minutes after you pull the cork. The distributor is moving to the 2015 vintage; more stores, restaurants and wine bars should take a chance on it. ABV: 14 percent.

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More: A fantastic French red for just $15 a bottle – The Washington Post

Let’s Talk Wine: Lovely Loire Valley reds

The Loire Valley, referred to as the Garden of France, is known for its magnificent chateaux and rich history, and runs at the heart of France with five distinct wine regions – Pays Nantais, Anjou, Saumur, Touraine, Centre-Loire – each with its own characteristics of grapes, appellations and styles. The wine-growing regions dotting the Loire’s banks feature about 4,000 wineries, 170,000 acres of vineyards and 61 appellations of origin, making the Loire Valley the third largest French wine-making region, producing [ . . . ]

More: Let’s Talk Wine: Lovely Loire Valley reds