French winemaking started in the 6th century BC after the Greek settlers colonized Southern Gaul. However, it was the Romans who planted the vines in all the major wine regions in around 300 AD. The Roman Catholic Church was a major player in keeping winemaking traditions alive during the Middle Ages. Monks in Burgundy noticed that different soil, climate, terrain, and winemaking techniques all worked together to create wines that tasted different, and France’s idea of terroir was born. These monks experimented to find out which vineyard sites made the best wine, which laid the early foundation for France’s appellation system. The country produces all styles of wine, from the cool wines of the Loire Valley, the stylish whites of Alsace, through the classics of Bordeaux and Burgundy, to the more powerful, muscular offerings of the Rhône Valley and the warm wines of Languedoc-Roussillon. And unique in their northern altitudes are the great Champagnes. Our French wine guide includes dozens of French wine that you can sort by wine region, grape variety, vintage, ratings or price.

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