French Wine

Perhaps no country evokes such strong associations with fine wine as does France. Its reputation has led to worldwide imitation. Many varieties that are now considered international, such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay, are French, and winemaking pioneers in New World regions such as California and Chile look to the great wines of France as their benchmark.

France has been making wine since approximately 600 BC, and was its largest producer until it was passed by Italy in 2008.  With over 800,000 hectacres under vine, it has the largest vineyard area in the world after Spain. It is, however, the world’s largest producer of fine wines. AC wines constitute over 45 percent of its production, compared with 12 to 15 percent of Italy’s, for example.

One advantage France has over other wine-producing countries is the great variety of growing climates it encompasses. Its south has a Mediterranean climate, with a warm sun that can be relied on to fully ripen grapes. Western France Read more »

Mentor for French Wines

Mary John Baumann, DWS

Accredited wine expert with advanced wine education, sales and lecturing talent. Creative marketer with demonstrated success in global marketing and development of leading multinational luxury brands.

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Popular wines made in France under $20

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Varietals Produced in France View all

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Sauvignon Blanc

    Sauvignon Blanc is widely grown in California -- at over 15,000 acres, it’s now the third most planted variety -- and...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Syrah

    The irony here is that Syrah’s origins could give Carmen Sandiego a run for her international wallet. Syrah’s deepest...

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

  • Merlot

    The Occitanian word “merlot” translates to “young blackbird.” An accurate description for this popular, early-budding...

Subregions of France

  • Alsace

    This region, wedged between the Rhine River and the Voges Mountains, is the product of a fascin...

  • Armagnac

      Armagnac is a grape brandy that is produced in the Gascony region of France. It’s the olde...

  • Bordeaux

    Located around the Gironde estuary and along the Dordogne and Garonne rivers, Bordeaux is one o...

  • Burgundy

      Burgundy is perhaps the most complex and intimidating of French wine regions. It is locate...

  • Champagne

      Champagne is the most famous sparkling wine region in the world. It is located in northeas...

  • Cognac

      Table wine production has existed in the Cognac region of France since the Romans first pl...

  • Jura

    Jura is a French wine region that lies between Burgundy and Switzerland. The wines produced her...

  • Languedoc-roussillon

      This incredibly diverse region produces about a quarter of all the wine made in France, bu...

  • Loire

      The Loire River valley is a massively varied viticultural region in northwestern France. I...

  • Provence

    Sun-soaked Provence – home of the celebrated destinations of St. Tropez and Cannes, and beloved...

  • Rhône

      Located along a section of the Rhone river in southeastern France, this is really two regi...

  • Savoie

    Vin de Savoie is an Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC) situation in the Alps. The wines from...

  • South West France

    South West France, or Sud Ouest, is a large expanse that covers several districts within the co...

  • Aquitaine and Charentes

  • Auvergne

Popular Wineries in France View all

  • Albert Boxler

    Albert Boxler is a 300-year-old family winery in the small town of Niedermorschwihr. The domaine ...

  • Champagne Demoiselle Vranken

    Built on the hamlet of Les Demoiselles, the Château des Castaignes produces the DEMOISELLE vintag...

  • Clos de l'Oratoire des Papes

    Patience, know-how, observation, intuition...these are the skills required to make and age our wi...

  • Alexis Lichine

    Alexis Lichine was a Russian-born wine writer and entrepreneur, who made many important contrib...

  • Château Paul Mas

    For over 170 years, González Byass has committed itself to research and quality for its range of ...

  • Château Saint Christophe

    The Château Saint-Christophe is an independent family-owned vintner from the Bordeaux area in F...

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France on Snooth

  • Iam fairly new to french wine. I am looking to start expanding my french wine knowledge. I would love any suggestions.

    Comment by 7964231francophile 796423 1francophile

  • Rinquinquin Peach France NV


    I said 'good-bye' to my last bottle of Rinquinquin over a year ago. I have ... ... to no avail.I'll call France if need be. I just can't find it.HELP, PLEASE!Cherlyn Karagul, Bost Read More

    Wine review by Vaison

  • Château Patris Red Bordeaux Blend St. Émilion Grand Cru 2010


    The 2010 Patris has a deep, rich cherry flan nose with cedar plank and certain ripe cigar tobacco added to the mix. The kirsch-like flavor on entry is guided by a medium strength tannin that allows for further aging... athough, if this little bit of mouth pucker does not detract, the power of this wine is evident and pleasant in its long finish.... Read More

    Wine review by zufrieden

  • Camin Larredya 'Costat Darrer' Jurancon Moelleux 2011


    Love, love this wine. Complex. Read More

    Wine review by invinoveritas78

  • Perrini Negroamaro 2011


    Looking for red choices that are affordable and expand your palette, this is a wonderful food wine. Balanced with good fruit. Add a new grape to your wine book. Read More

    Wine review by sbr1105

  • JD - I don't know that I'd say yuck to all of them. Tasted the Long ... ... and several in Spain and France. Some negociants simply buy the co-op wine and sell it under another label. It's honest wine and often quite good.I have to agree however, that a lot of the wine in places like BevMo could give those operations a bad name. They buy up ju... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Locations F1 vs F2 vs F3

  • Chateau Haut-Marbuzet St. Estephe 2001


    I bought this bottle of wine as part of a lot from the website Saint-Estephe is an AOC in the north of the Medoc peninsular that was created in n1936 although viticulture in the area goes back centuries.Chateau Haut-Marbuzet is a Cru Bourgeois estate with a high reputation. My bottle is made from 50% cab... Read More

    Wine review by duncan 906

  • Colombard is commonly used in Armagnac and Cognac. By regulation for it to ... ... types of eau de vie across France, or for such as Marc de Bourgogne (a kind of 'pomace' brandy which can translate as a French grappa, and which I like very much when made by the right people) are different, of cours Read More

    Forum post in the topic And now for something...

  • Colombard crops really heavily.  Of course, it's used more in spirits ... kinds of grapes are used in France for Brand Read More

    Forum post in the topic And now for something...

  • M. Chapoutier Cotes du Roussillon Villages les Vignes de Bila-Haut Blanc 2013


    a wonderful cuvee while not overtly expressive, it is discreetly impressive. Read More

    Wine review by Pickit4flavor

  • Yeah but the problem with dessert wine is that to be good it should also have ... ... planted white grapes in France actually, planted all across the south.The Arien has been coming up fast. I just typed from memory and didn't check.Core winery in Santa Barbara did a late harvest Grenache a few years ago. It was also a little fizzy and I want... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Garnacha, grenache--tomato,...

  • Just found out my 90 yr old mil would love to have a bottle of Chassagne-Montrachet as her father was originally from France and she thinks there might be a connection to the wineries. I would like to get a nice bottle for her (approx. $40 - 50). Am in the 21222 zipcode and can't find anything near me.

    Comment by 1429001Sharyn Jenkins 1429001 Sharyn Jenkins

  • where in the uk can we obtain clos siguier, a malbec?

    Comment by 983342mitmann 983342 mitmann

  • OMG. Thats where wine comes from. Huge varienty and quality to go around and around. My favorite wines come from France. Yay!

    Comment by 936723WineauxSlave 936723 WineauxSlave

  • New image uploaded to this page.

    Page modification by 868380songwx 868380 songwx

  • appellation-a-vent Stuart Imports Chateau Des Jaque J Thorin 1959 Magnum

    Comment by 744135Lila Meyers 744135 Lila Meyers

  • Just had a bottle of Chateau Des Gravies 1999 with dinner at Christmas Eve. It was fantastic, well balanced and great finish.

    Comment by 696084Rkato 696084 Rkato

  • Let’s face it, this is may be the most intimidating problem facing a prospective wine buyer, either at a restaurant, wine store or wine auction. You probably don’t remember French pronunciation, but if you are lucky you may have some other Romantic language under your belt. Here is a list of some basic terms and their pronunciation: * Amon...

    Comment by 629309MadBistro 629309 MadBistro

  • "Ridiculously cheap" yet "drinkable" - how often do you find those phrases together in connection with French wine? See them dance together on the Sediment blog at

    Comment by 546548Sedimentblog 546548 Sedimentblog

  • Love France - love French wine!

    Comment by 345074Sweetie22 345074 Sweetie22

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