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

Christy Canterbury MW

Master of Wine. Wine judge+public speaker. Journalist for Snooth+Decanter+TimAtkin.com+Beverage Media+SOMM Journal+Civiltà del Bere+others. Short-listed for the 2014 Roederer Online Communicator of the Year Award. Incorrigible traveler!

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Popular wines made in France under $20

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Varietals Produced in France View all

  • Sauvignon Blanc

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

  • Syrah

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

  • Merlot

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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Chardonnay

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

  • Pinot Noir

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

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 Bichot

    From !#%0, the Bichot family was established in Burgundy, with a deer as a symbol. is is only in ...

  • Château De Seguin

    Château de Seguin in Bordeaux is part of the CHRIS-WINE Group. An indenpendent and family owned w...

  • Moët & Chandon

      Moet & Chandon is one of the most well-known luxury champagne producers in the word. Wi...

  • Lamothe

    We had this wine while in the Bahamas and loved it. Would like to know where we can purchase it...

  • Arrogant Frog

    Arrogant Frog was born in the Herault Valley in Languedoc in the south of France, near the Medite...

  • Château Franc Cardinal

    This estate was originally owned by Jean-Louis Lacour but he sent most of his production to a n...

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France on Snooth

  • Domaine William Fèvre Saint Bris Sauvignon Blanc Saint-Bris 2012

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by martins2002


  • Mont Gravet Rose 2015

    Snoothrank:

    My high rating is likely based off of my general distaste for rose. However, this has hints of raspberry, not strawberry which is what I dislike. Crisp. Well priced. Screw top, too! Read More

    Wine review by connie7899


  • Irouleguy Domaine Ilarria 2012

    Snoothrank:

    I bought this bottle of wine from a shop in Wiltshire [www.yapp.co.uk ] for £19.Irouleguy is an appellation created in 1990 [although there has been viticulture here since at least the Romans ] for red,rose and white wines from 9 communes around the village of that name located about 25 miles south-east of the town of Biaritz in the foothills of... Read More

    Wine review by duncan 906


  • I have just finished a bottle of Cuvee Piere Rouges Domaine Laurens from the ... appellation of Marcillac in France.It is 100% mansois an unusual grape type but it was absolutely lovely. It was full bodied with lots of intense fruit and it was not expensive. It is the second Marcillac I have had and I think it a pity more places do not stock Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


  • Domaine Laurens Cuvee Pierres Rouges Marcillac Aoc 2015

    Snoothrank:

    I bought this bottle of wine from a shop in north London [www.theatreofwine.com] for £13.Marcillac is an appellation for red and rose wines created in 1990 [although there has been viticulture here for centuries ] made of at least 80% mansois [sometimes called fer servadou or braucol ] from 11 communes north-west of the small town of Rodez [abou... Read More

    Wine review by duncan 906


  • Chateau Bel Air Haut-Medoc 2013

    Snoothrank:

    A very good Bordeaux with a full, slightly tart but smooth Finnish but easy on the budget that would suggest a higher price for a wine as good as this. Read More

    Wine review by Pickit4flavor


  • That reserve labeling is abused world wide - France included - The Famille Perrin Reserve in the southern Rhone is actually their entry level CdR wine and costs about $10.The word used to mean something and as GREG stated it's marketing.  Some producers do honor the word, but most don't. Read More

    Forum post in the topic Value Wines - under $20 USD...


  • Chateau de Puligny-Montrachet Chassagne-Montrachet 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Very nice Read More

    Wine review by phaseshiftdigital


  • Les Confidentiels du Château Petit Boyer Mary 2007

    Snoothrank:

    Exceptional well aroma, like a cooked shrimp dishes, delicious on the palate. Not like any other Sauvignon Blanc that gaudy. Fantastic for the price! Read More

    Wine review by MBCareU


  • Costes de Beyrac Buzet 2014

    Snoothrank:

    I bought this bottle of wine from a shop in London's Kensington [www.nicolas.com ] for £8.50. It is from the Buzet appellation.This appellation was created in 1973 [although there has been winemaking here for many centuries ] for red,white and rose wines made from similar grape varieties as the Bordeaux appellation to the north,from 27 communes ... Read More

    Wine review by duncan 906


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