If you’re looking for some of the most distinct and high-quality wines in the world, you have to consider French Red Wine. This is widely known for being a quality benchmark. It has a great flavor, outstanding aroma, and unique texture. In addition, it can also be very inexpensive. With that in mind, there are many varieties of French Red Wine. You can find upwards of 250 red wine grapes/varieties in France.
The most popular French Red Wine grape varieties
It’s important to note that around 11% of the Merlot wines are prepared in France. The most common regions for this are Languedoc-Roussilon, Cahors, Bergerac and Bordeaux, among many others. It’s also blended with grapes that have a high tannin value in order to deliver a soft texture.
Found in Southern Rhone, Provence, and Languedoc-Roussilon, this grape has fruity and fresh flavors. Many consider it a key grape for the Vin de Pays. It’s different but extremely tasteful and a pleasure to try out.
This is a classic, you can find it in regions like Loire Valley, Alsace, Burgundy, and so on. It’s widely produced all over the country, and it has a low tannin level. Some examples are the Conti Grand Cru or the Domaine de la Romanee.
You can find it in the Loire Valley and Beaujolais. You will find it used to generate rose wines. It has a medium to high acidity level. However, it also comes with a floral aroma, which makes it very distinctive and different.
The Franc Cabernet is known for having thinner skin when compared to the Sauvignon. You also get lower acidity levels. These grapes also ripen and grow faster too. You want to try it for the earthy and somewhat spicy flavors. This is found in the Languedoc-Roussilon area, Loire and Bordeaux.
Sauvignon has stellar aging potential. It’s the ideal French Red Wine for long-term storage. You can find it in SW France and Bordeaux. One thing to note is that this is one of the most planted types of grapes in France.
You will find it in Herault, Gard and Aude, all within Languedoc. This is a great wine with high acidity and tannin levels. It also has a rich color, when compared to many other wines. If you blend it with Mourvedre or Grenache, it can deliver dark fruit flavors.
Syrah is grown in regions like Languedoc-Roussilon, but also Rhone Valley. Many find it one of the top French Red Wine options because it has a dark fruit flavor. You have a great taste coming from a dark-skinned red wine grape.
If you go to Languedoc-Roussilon or the Rhone Valley, this is the most popular grape type out there. It delivers a great combination of fruity and woody textures, and it’s tasty as well.
Things you should know about French Red Wine
One thing to keep in mind is that most French Red Wines are actually blends. There are varietals, but you will mostly find blends. French wineries do this because they get to bring in an exquisite taste into the mix.
The top wine region based on size is Languedoc-Roussillon, then you have Bordeaux, Rhone Valley, Loire Valley, Burgundy, Champagne and Alsace.
Most French Red Wine is described as being rich, complex, tannic, and powerful.
Although this varies and depends on the region, the blends etc… the main aromas of French Red Wine include things like cherry core, blueberry and even some ripe plums.
French Red Wine are deep red and in some cases, they also have purple highlights.
Which are the most popular French Red Wine regions?
When you think about Red Wine, the first thing that comes to mind must be Bordeaux, the name itself means the red wine color. Some of the biggest names coming from the region of Bordeaux are the Châteaux Haut Brion, Pessac Leognan Rouge and Chateau Lafite Rothschild, Pauillac, Medoc.
Another well-known region that produces red wine is Burgundy. The Domaine de la Romanee, Conti Romanee, Conti Grand Cru and Domaine de la Romanee, Conti La Tache Grand Cru Monopole are some of the great names coming from there.
Does all French Red Wine have the same, high quality?
As you can imagine, no two wineries are the same. They work with a variety of grape types, some of which are very specific to a certain region. While France is known for having high-quality wineries, not all of them have the same legacy and growth features and systems. That’s why not all French Red Wines are extraordinary. You always want to go with something that’s reputable, with a lot of history, and you will find that it delivers incredible results.
There’s no denying that French Red Wine is extraordinary and well beyond many of the other options you can find on the market. It’s unique, different and it manages to stand out on its own. While there are so many grape varieties in France, the truth is that most of them tend to be really high quality. It’s important to perform a taste test, but generally, these are amazing wines that everyone will enjoy!