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The wine regions of France

France is the land of wine par excellence. La Grande Nation produces more quality wines than anywhere else. France is a role model for winemakers everywhere.

History of the wine regions of France

Fruity Burgundies, assemblages of red Bordeaux or sparkling champagne: the French wine regions produce a wide variety of fine wines that are second to none. Top French products are among the treasures of every wine collector. But even inexpensive everyday wines can provide the highest drinking pleasure. There is probably no other country that produces so many flavours of the highest quality.
The first vineyards were planted by the Greeks in 500 BC, when they founded the city of Marseille, and a few centuries later the Romans defined the boundaries of today's winegrowing regions. The Romans used all the climatically suitable slopes in the large river valleys for growing vines: they built up the famous winegrowing regions of France such as Bordeaux, Burgundy, Rhône, Loire, Champagne and Alsace between 200 BC and 400 AD. After the collapse of the Roman Empire, the various peoples who had settled in the region continued to grow vines in France.
In the Middle Ages it was the churches and monasteries that promoted viticulture in France. The monks were well versed, and they contributed a great deal to French wine culture as we know it today. They refined cultivation methods and production techniques in all the classic wine regions of France. The wine trade also experienced an enormous boom in the Middle Ages, not least because of the English trading settlements in Bordeaux.The trade in French wines was already very advanced in the 17th and 18th centuries. The development of the wine regions of France with access to the open sea (Loire, Bordeaux) was particularly vigorous because waterborne transport was faster and more convenient.During the French Revolution most church vineyards were nationalized, and later distributed to free peasants. Viticulture suffered a severe setback in the first half of the 18th century: phylloxera devastated almost all vineyards, which subsequently had to be laboriously replanted. Most of the wines produced after that were fairly basic.Even back then, the French knew that soil conditions, climate and grape variety affected the quality of the wine. This interaction resulted in a unique characteristic that gave rise to the term "terroir". After the Second World War the French wine industry posted improved quality and economic growth, both of which continue to this day.

Geography of the winegrowing regions of France

Wine is produced in almost all of France's 95 departments, from the north, in Champagne, to the rugged limestone mountains of the Jura and the Mediterranean climes of Provence. The diversity of France's winegrowing regions is due to the different soil and climatic conditions in the regions.

The wine regions of France

Viticulture is very important in France. The regions of Bordeaux, Champagne, Burgundy, Alsace, Rhône and the Loire are particularly famous for their world-class quality wines.

France's top wine regions

French wines

Whether you prefer red or white, still or sparkling, French products offer everything that sets a wine lover's pulse racing. Embark on a journey through the wine regions of France with Mondovino and enjoy their finest products, from strong, sweet Banyuls to light, fruity Beaujolais. French wines are available in the coop.ch online shop as well as in Coop sales outlets.

Popular wines from France

Winemakers & wineries in France