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Home | France

France - Birthplace of Wine

Any discussion of wine must include the role of the French in evolving wine making whether from the early influence of Christian monks to the establishment of the world’s dominant wine quality codification scheme.   No single country has had more influence on the wine industry than France.  The country remains amongst the largest producer, consumer, and exporter of wine.  The French influence pervades New World wines as well and there is more than an even chance that wine from Chile or Argentina comes from a winery with French ownership.  keep reading . . .


Explore the key wine regions of France below.

Vouvray - Tradition makes perfection
Vouvray - Tradition makes perfection Last week we spent several days touring vineyards in the Appellation Origine Controlee (AOC) of Vouvray, Touraine's largest white wine region. Here, Chenin Blanc is the grape of choice, in fact there is no choice. This is because in Vouvray, like so many AOCs in France, the practice of growing grapes and making wine is more tightly controlled than perhaps anywhere else in the world. . . . keep reading
5 Tips to enjoying the French Countryside
September 6, 2014 Brian Gurnham Chief Cork Officer
Having returned from a week in the Loire Valley I thought I would take this opportunity to share a few tips should you find yourself traveling to the area. They are half serious, and half tongue in cheek -- please no disparaging comments from Francophiles - we loved the Loire Valley and are already planning a month long return visit. . . . keep reading
Update from the Loire Valley
First day in the Loire Valley. Biked from the beautiful village of Amboise (after an amazing patisserie) to the village and AOC of Montlouis-Sur-Loire. Vineyards as far as . . . keep reading
Off to the Loire!
Brian Gurnham Chief Cork Officer
Next week I have the pleasure of beginning an eight day family tour of France's Loire Valley. Always eager to expand my wine experiences, I thought it only appropriate to research the area prior to our arrival -- both to sound a bit more knowledgeable, but more importantly, to try and ensure that we see and visit the best the region has to offer during eight short days. So without further ado, here's a brief summary of the Loire Valley. Follow us on Facebook for photos and updates as I report from the "Garden of France". . . . keep reading
Rhône Valley - Home of the Pope?
The Rhône Valley bisects the southeastern part of France from Lyons in the north where it joins the Saône River, until it empties into the Mediterranean south of Avignon. Arguably one of the most prestigious wine producing regions in the world, the Rhône Valley is second only to Bordeaux in the production of AOC-level wine. . . . keep reading
Burgundy (Bourgogne)
One fourth the size of Bordeaux, Burgundy is no less famous. Some of the world's best and most expensive wines hail from the five sub-regions that comprise Burgundy. According to sales data the wine with the highest average sales price is Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Romanee-Conti Grand Cru, a Pinot Noir from the Cote de Nuits region of Burgundy that averages over $10,000 per bottle! . . . keep reading
France - Birthplace of Wine
France - Birthplace of Wine Any discussion of wine must include the role of the French in evolving wine making whether from the early influence of Christian monks to the establishment of the world's dominant wine quality codification scheme. No single country has had more influence on the wine industry than France. . . . keep reading
Médoc - The Lesser Médoc
Médoc - The Lesser Médoc French wine can sometimes be hard to understand. The system of classifications, the obligation to know regions, the conglomeration of vowels in wine terms (i.e. Bordeaux) can be quite intimidating. Oh, and sometimes a name can have multiple meanings. Case in point - Médoc. . . . keep reading
Loire Valley - The Garden of France
The Loire [pronounced L'wahr] Valley is located in northern France. It follows the Loire River (France's longest river), stretching over 600 miles from central France in the east to the Atlantic Ocean in the west. It is often referred to as "the garden of France," because of the abundance of vineyards and orchards that line the banks of the river. . . . keep reading
Pommard In a region known for white wine, this commune appellation in the Côte de Beaune of Burgundy stands out for its reds. Located just south of the town of Beaune, the commercial center of Burgundy, Pommard has built a reputation for being the epitome of red Burgundy over the centuries. . . . keep reading
Côte de Beaune
In the thin strip of land that comprises Burgundy, the appellation of Côte de Beaune forms one of the nar . . . keep reading
Côte d'Or
Côte d'Or Of the famous world wine regions, few are as revered as Burgundy. And within Burgundy, the Côte d'Or contains the most prominent vineyards within the world renowned appellation. On the west bank of the Saone River in the east of France, the strip of vineyards that runs south from Dijon is the jewel of Burgundy. . . . keep reading
Beaujolais Nouveau - The Thanksgiving wine
Defined by Beaujolais Nouveau this wine region in the southern reaches of Burgundy is known for one grape variety – Gamay.  Released on the third Thursday of November, Beaujolais Nouveau ha . . . keep reading
If you could only visit one AOC in Bordeaux, Pauillac might very well be the choice.  Home to three of the top five premier growths in the region, many would argue that the wine coming . . . keep reading
October 25, 2012
Chablis The most northerly appellation in Burgundy, Chablis is somewhat of an anomaly, not just in terms of the grapes it grows and the style of wines it produces, but also geographic location. . . . keep reading
Pouilly-Fumé - The Miniature Giant
October 18, 2012
Shortly before the Loire River makes a westerly turn towards Nantes and the Atlantic, it passes the Appellation d'Origine Controlee (AOC) of Pouilly-Fumé. In terms of overall size, Pouilly-Fumé is tiny, accounting for a small part of the total production from the Loire. Yet, it remains a giant within the region, crafting wines that exude individuality and are recognized around the world. . . . keep reading
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