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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • 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...

  • Chardonnay

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

  • 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...

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

  • Lamothe

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

  • Michel Picard

    Picard Père et Fils is one of the largest wine producers and négociants in Burgundy and, with nea...

  • Château Paul Mas

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

  • Château De Seguin

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

  • Alexis Lichine

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

  • 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


  • Chateau Saint Roch Vieilles Vignes 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Really nice Cotes Du Roussillon blend of grenache blanc and marsanne. The nose has ripe apricot, a bit of flint and some yeast. On the tongue is fig, golden delicious apple, a touch of salinity, nice acidity and a medium finish. Read More

    Wine review by vin0vin0


  • Chateau de la Huste Fronsac 2010

    Snoothrank:

    When I first opened the bottle it was bold and smooth which I loved but I felt that the taste was a little bland. Two weeks after my first taste I reopened the bottle to have a glass after dinner and the taste was amazing. It had a slightly fruity scent and taste and was extremely smooth. Definitely one of my favorite! Read More

    Wine review by Rita Han


  • Château Moine Vieux St. Émilion-Grand Cru 2011

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Frenzy


  • Prince de Saint-Aubin Sauternes 2011

    Snoothrank:

    I bought this bottle of wine for 10 euros the last time I was in Calais.Sauternes is a prestigious appellation for sweet white wines from around the tiny village of that name close to the town of Langon on the west bank of the river Garonne about 25 miles south of the City of Bordeaux.The sweetness arises because of using late harvest grapes aff... Read More

    Wine review by duncan 906


  • Tortoise Creek le Charmel Costieres de Nimes 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Inviting smoky aromas have a red fruit character of cherry and some plum and blackberry with a floral framing that keeps the whole nose quite light. In the mouth it's juicy and earthy in the same breath, with more cherry and blackberry fruit, excellent balance and acidity, well integrated oak and good spice. Still quite youthful and vibrant, an ... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Domaine Costal Chablis Premier Cru Vaillons 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Really nice chablis. Plenty of lemon cream, green pear, decent acidity and a bit of salinity on the medium to medium-long finish. I like this wine but it seems to be just a touch flat, may need some more time in bottle to bring out some complexity. Read More

    Wine review by vin0vin0


  • Clos des Menuts 2005

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Frenzy


  • Château Camensac Red Bordeaux Blend Haut-Médoc 2001

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Frenzy


  • Château la Mélissière Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2007

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Frenzy


  • Gérôme et Dolorès Morand-Monteil Merlot Blend Pécharmant Château Terre Vieille 2007

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Frenzy


  • 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 www.sedimentblog.com

    Comment by 546548Sedimentblog 546548 Sedimentblog


  • Love France - love French wine!

    Comment by 345074Sweetie22 345074 Sweetie22


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