Wine in the South of France
The French culture and wine are practically inseparable. The country has such strong and established wine-making traditions that it is practically impossible to not consider France as one of the go-to countries when it comes to picking quality wine for your dinner party. That being said, there is great regional variety when it comes to wine in France and South of France has its own established wine industry and regional specificities. Here are some of the most niche wine regions of the South and some festivals where you may enjoy them.
Regions and their Wines
- Côtes de Provence is the biggest wine region in Provence and is mostly known for their fantastic rosé wines. They exhibit exceptional clear-salmon colour and light bodies that are fresh and fruity. Grenache, Mourvèdre, Tibouren, Cinsault, and Syrah are some of the most common grape varieties in the region.
- Bandol has numerous vineyards famous for their red wines. Interestingly, it is the only French wine made mostly from Mourvèdre. The powerful grapes allow the wine to procure rich taste and distinct character that has earned a name for itself over the years.
- Coteaux Varois is a region surrounded by mountains and thus experiences slightly different climate conditions from most other regions in the South of France. Lower temperatures allow for later harvest and in that way give the wine specific character. Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsaut, Mourvèdre, Syrah, and Carignan are the most common grape varieties and they create possibilities to produce red, rose and white wine alike.
- Gaillac is one of the oldest French regions famous for its wine. The name for its quality dates back to Roman times, and now it is less famous that regions like Bordeaux or Burgundy but none the less has some spectacular wines to offer, especially red ones.
1. Les Primeurs d’Oc Festival in Beziers starts off the list because it is one the biggest wine festivals in France. It’s not just wine tastings, it’s an entire celebration – there is quality food to be had with an emphasis on France’s famous cheeses, there are spectacular dance and theater performances to keep you entertained while you enjoy a glass of wine of your choice.
2. Salon des Vignerons et de la Gastronomie in Marseille attracts more than 400 wine makers from all over the region and even from abroad. You will be able to get your hands on some delicious foods and taste some of the most supreme wines of the Mediterranean. On top of that, Marseille is one of the biggest and most spectacular cities of France with a magnificent coastline, so you will be able to enjoy your feast accompanied by some great views.
3. Fête des Vins et Montgolfiades in Duras is quite a special one when it comes to any kind of wine festival! Make sure you are comfortable with heights as this festival involves numerous air balloon flights and after that, a wine tasting experience you will never forget!