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The best wines in France are world-renowned for their flavor profile and unique characteristics. After all, the French have a long history of winemaking expertise that stretches back to the 6th century BC.
That said, it can be challenging to know where to start when looking for wines from different French wine regions and of different French wine classifications. But fear not! We’ve compiled some of the best-tasting wines from France, so you can try them and pick your favorite!
Best French Red Wines
The Lafite-Rothschild is among the best French wines for all the right reasons. It is 92% Cabernet Sauvignon and 8% Merlot which were carefully grown in new oak, giving the elixir sweetness of the fruit. The complexity and richness are easily detectable as well, even at an early stage in its life cycle.
There's plenty to enjoy here. It pulses from sweet blackberry flavors to tart cassis notes on your palate before finishing with high acidity paired against rich tannins. It also maintains composure through tight construction and classicism rooted in terroir.
It costs a lot, but you'll see its worth in every drop. If you leave it to age for a few years, you'll understand the meaning of each penny spent on it.
Take a break from the everyday grind and go off the grid with a bottle of Chateau La Mission. Drift away to your very own vineyards in Bordeaux, France, as you sip this Cabernet Sauvignon blend under dusk's descending twilight with your lover by your side.
It has an intense aroma of fresh berries and chocolate cake while also tasting like dirt with a hint of tea in between sips. The different fruit tastes balance each other out very well on your palate, leaving you feeling full yet wanting more at every turn!
This vintage will leave you speechless as time goes by because not only does this red taste great, but smells even better than what comes before it down the line.
The Cos d'Estournel is a wine that has been around for centuries, and it's not going anywhere. The taste of this French wine embodies the true essence of sophistication, class, and refinement with its dark inky-purple color, all while still maintaining elegance despite being very intense.
One can't help but feel at ease after tasting just one wine glass because the balance between fruit flavors like cassis as well as spice notes such as cinnamon is enough to soothe any palate type of mood you may be experiencing on any given day.
This aromatic blend starts closed but slowly opens out into beautiful notes, including lilacs, rosehip tea, and crushed stones! Plus, the subtle yet sweet smells of crème de cassis liqueur plus kirsch wine make this one unforgettable.
This French wine presents a plethora of flavors. The color is dark red with blueish hues and releases an array of strong smells when it is swirled in the glass. Red fruit aromas mixed with blackberries emit from it and spices like star anise, licorice, and empyreumatic notes.
It has an extensive range on first taste but then becomes smoother due to its structured body. It has a great texture that you can feel on your tongue.
The tannins are rich, yet they're suspended, so the fruit taste doesn't get overpowered by them like some wines do when aging too long. This is definitely an amazing find, considering how young this vintage was made!
The 2020 Lynsolence is an exceptional wine with a deep purple-black color and French oak barriques aging for 18 months. The fresh blackberries, crushed cherries, and ripe plums are the first to hit your nose.
But as you take a sip of this wine, there are also hints of a cedar chest in the air around it with lilacs that remind you just how beautiful spring can be coming along for company.
And when those tannins draw out all that fruit from each flavor. They bring things together so well! The high alcohol percentage makes sure these flavors stay throughout every moment on your palate until they leave off long after everything else is gone.
The 2005 Chambertin has a unique and pleasant aroma. When you taste the wine, it is shockingly satisfying without being too heavy on your tongue. The flavors are fruity with hints of black licorice, wild mushrooms, and wet stones that linger pleasantly in your mouth for some time after each sip.
The wine is so complex with a beautiful mix of flavors. You can taste the minerality and sweetness in this red wine, making it savory but not superficial!
The finish has just enough heat to give you that extra kick to remind you how good your palate is at picking up on subtle nuances. This delicious combination makes this vintage worth checking out if you're ever looking through France's most famous wines list.
The Nuits-Saint-Georges is a wine that leaves an impression. It's not just because of the rich, round flavor and mouthfeel but also the violet aroma and refreshing acidity. The fruitiness in this wine gives it a sense of warmth which makes you want to drink more as your palate absorbs each succulent note.
This wine is bursting with ripe strawberries and blueberries, as well as a beautiful floral note. Notes of wood spice can be tasted on the nose while it hits your mouth like fireworks in terms of richness and complexity!
This quality vino has medium to full-bodied weightiness that makes for an expansive experience when drinking this delicious fare from stemware or glass tumblers alike.
This French wine is a clever blend of Gamay grapes from the Côte du Py in Beaujolais. This brings excellent depth and minerality to give it all its complexity. It has lovely aromas that mix with cherries and peonies for an astonishingly well-structured taste that leaves you wanting more.
The aging process makes this one year long, perfecting every last detail so your tongue can revel in the crispness of cherry balanced by light tones. This Beaujolais wine is renowned for its intense mineral expression.
With terroir-driven intensity and concentration that’s long with an intoxicating finish of wet stones, it will make you want to explore more wines from the Beaujolais Cru vineyards.
The Domaine Tollot-Beaut is the best French wine of rustic nature and robust flavors that are found in wines from Beaune. You will find notes of red cherries with hints of sweeter fruits, which mix well with slightly coarse tannins for an intriguing taste experience.
The unique combination between fruitiness and minerality makes this wine great to pair with food or drink alone on any occasion. Red Burgundy is a versatile wine with high acidity, medium body, and low tannins that make it very food-friendly.
Red Burgundy's earthy character also makes for great matches when paired with roasted game birds or grilled duck breast, while the rich umami flavors in other foods can bring out some interesting notes from this particular type of red wine.
Domaine de la Charbonniere is not your average, everyday wine. This complex and sophisticated blend of red raspberries and maraschino cherries has hints of garrigue, tea leaves with a slight rose flavor mixed in for good measure.
There are dried spices that have been so artfully blended into this masterpiece, and you'll taste them long after the first sip without even trying to find them.
The nose has the fresh smell of red fruits with oak spice lightly toasting in the background. There's finesse and power on this palate, and tannins surround it while still presenting an impeccable core.
Here's a wine to please even the traditionalist in all of us. With its elegant ruby-red color and full-bodied, velvety finish, M. Chapoutier's Saint-Joseph Rouge will make those long-gone memories surface with every sip.
Pull up your nose from the glass and be welcomed by aromas of blackcurrants, blackberries, ground pepper, scorched earth, and graphite.
The texture of this beauty is so smooth you might find yourself forgetting you're drinking alcohol at all until you get that sweet, mellow buzz afterward. It pairs splendidly if shared over a dinner conversation or taken alongside another bottle.
Gaze into this wine's dark, hypnotizing magenta color, and you're instantly drawn in. This wine’s deep, red color shows the intensity and richness you would expect from a Côte-Rôtie. The nose is full of aromas such as cherry, dark berry preserves, exotic spices, scented flowers with subtle hints of bacon fat, and savory herbs.
There are intense black raspberry flavors that deepen slowly on the back half, along with fragrances like cherries in cola to pastille violet, which all come together for an impressively long-lasting finish.
It also offers a beautiful floral thrust at times throughout its taste profile while maintaining a jolt of spiciness that rounds off nicely without being too heavy or tannin-based.
Best French White Wines
This crisp and refreshing Pouilly-Fuisse Solutre will make anyone's day brighter! This white wine has enough complexity that you may notice, like almonds, gingerbread, stone fruits, even though it remains subtle in taste overall.
But don't worry about this one going flat on your palate thanks to its delicate balance, which leaves you feeling refreshed after each sip.
This wine first seems like a fluffy, creamsicle-like Chardonnay. However, given enough time, the flavors of spicy apples with toasted lees show through before settling into an easygoing texture that’s perfect for summer days spent by the poolside while playing your favorite wine game with friends.
The village of Pouilly-Fuisse is a vineyard in the Maconnais that produces prestigious Chardonnay wine. The limestone mixed with heavy clay soils creates an interesting terroir that produces wines unlike other wine regions in the world.
The wine is a fragrant, sweet, and delightfully refreshing drink that goes well with rich cheeses. The green-gold color wine has an inviting aroma that smells like melons and pears mixed with almonds on the nose.
The crisp acidity leaves a satisfying finish to this delightful beverage from grapes aged in the cuverie of Chateau Corton Grancey in Aloxe-Corton. It pairs surprisingly well alongside meats or seafood such as shellfish or charcuterie - even reblochon cheese!
The Beaujolais from the hills of Brouilly and the Nizerand valley are the rarest. It makes up only 5% of the wines made in what we know as Beaujolais, and for a good reason too.
Sweet fruit flavors like peach blossom or pear jump out from a nose full of fresh and crisp white fruits with just a hint of floral notes.
And then an equally refreshing mouthful of minerals follows through to balance everything nicely. This drink pairs well with oysters on ice, seafood like grilled shrimp skewers, or dishes containing goat cheese. It may be a cheap white wine, but it certainly tastes expensive.
This Mediterranean-inspired wine has a distinct and original design that can be found in its rose-shaped bottle, which is the brainchild of a designer from Ecole Boulle. Its lovely yellow color with hints of gold makes it an excellent choice for any occasion.
The nose is filled with pleasant aromas, including citrus fruits, exotic flowers, candy apples, and pineapples. All result in a fresh taste experience that is incomparable to most other wines on the market today!
Whether you're looking for something new or just want something different than your typical Pinot Grigio while at dinner, this wine would be worth trying out. It can also be paired with fish or shellfish as well.
This is a blend of two of Trimbach’s famous grand crus. The Geisberg and Osterberg vineyards are home to limestone and muschelkalk soil, respectively. There is a gentle sweetness to its caramelized apple flavors mixed with fresh pear that lasts delicately on your tongue for purity before fading out softly.
This wine is bursting with flavor, including sweet nectarine and apricot aromas. It has an intense minerality due to the acidity that pairs wonderfully well with fusion cuisine! This unique combination of fruitiness from fresh flavors combined with rich, ripe acids creates a perfect balance in this drink.
This wine is a blend of two varietals: Pinot Blanc and Auxerrois. The vineyard surface is split six acres between these varieties for more variety in the finished product. Some wines are reserved to be made into sparkling wine, but most go into this still bottling due to its rich taste provided by both grape varieties.
Furthermore, they give floral notes from Pinot blanc and fatness and spice from Auxerrois that compliments each other well in terms of the flavor profile.
The 2018 vintage was the warmest year of modern times in Alsace, and this wine's purity, finesse, and nuances make it hard to believe that it comes from such a hot summer.
The 2019 Vouvray Clos du Bourg Sec offers a rich, complex nose with aromas of fully ripe stone and tropical fruit intertwined with earthy notes that make up for the wine's finesse. The full-bodied flavors are intense yet fruity on your palate, and it is very silky in texture while also being tight from its inherited mineral structure.
This Chenin Blanc comes from old vines, which give this quality an extra layer and make it more expressive because of their concentrated character given by these older plants.
The 2019 Vouvray is a wine that will make you feel like royalty. The tannins are strong, and the finesse lingers long after drinking it. This dry white wine needs time to be truly appreciated by all its nuances.
Chateau Pape Clement is known for its white wine, so it only fits that vineyards devoted to whites at Chateau Pape Clement represent 18 hectares of estate land.
It can be found near a town called Pessac, and they grow their vines on sheets of gravelly clay soils that are over 22 years old. Each bottle of this wine comprises of 67% Sauvignon Blanc, 30% Sémillon, and 3% Sauvignon Gris.
This has uniquely fascinating aromas of fresh pink grapefruit, Bosc pears, and lime blossoms with hints of coriander seed. The juicy and complex flavor profile is delivered in a surprisingly smooth way. The citrus notes come through first, with the pear following closely behind, making for a delightful experience that makes you want to keep drinking more!
From the moment you smell this wine, your taste buds will be tingling as they sing their approval. With its effervescence, tropical fruit flavors, and citrus overtones, you can't help but feel refreshed as soon as your lips touch this crisp Sauvignon Blanc.
The delicate acidity of the drink enhances its structure while prolonging that aftertaste. This provides a feeling of pure indulgence without any heaviness or unpleasantness before finishing off with lovely mineral tones reminiscent of France’s most acclaimed terroir region: Bordeaux, making this dry white wine one-of-a-kind in both taste and quality.
This light golden-yellow hued masterpiece was aged on fine lees for a year and is just begging to get into your cellar so that when it's time to pour one glass, this fantastic bottle won't disappoint!
Best Sparkling French Wines
If you're looking to serve a non-traditional sparkling wine, then Patrick Bottex Bugey is among the best Rosé wines for you. It has an unusual flavor that's slightly sweet and makes for the best party choice in hot weather or any time of year! The blend includes 80% Gamay with 20% Poulsard which gives it its unique taste.
It takes on a dark rose coloration and tastes like wild strawberries, perfect for those who love fruity flavors! With only 8% alcohol content, this light red sparkler won't leave your guests feeling sluggish after indulging during dessert hour at summer parties.
What makes this wine unique from the rest is instead of using the standard fermentation process, it was bottled partway through fermentation then refermented in a bottle until it reaches the desired sweetness.
Take your meal to the next level with a bottle of Cremant de Bourgogne! Perfect for summertime, it's dry and refreshing with lovely Frédéric Magnien flavors. Kick up your enjoyment by serving this bubbly as an entrée.
With its aromas and flavors of savory spices, earth, and wet stones, the Crèmant should pair well with roast pork tenderloin. The palate should be substantial with a bright finish, fresh fruitiness, floral scents, fine bubbles, and a light mousse.
This wine has weight, but it's balanced by the softness of its structure, giving way to long-lasting flavor. This wine is packed full of finesse in a bright yet refined taste that will make any occasion special.
Laherte Frères Blanc de Blancs Brut Nature is a light, crisp wine. It comes from the best Chardonnay grapes in Coteaux Sud d’Épernaie, and it undergoes no chemical treatment throughout its production process - all of which are organic or biodynamic.
The harvest time occurs at peak ripeness when vignerons pick all fruit by hand to ensure maximum quality for their customers. This wine has a pleasant fragrance of pear, apple, and almond.
It is light-bodied on the palate with acidity that balances well against its chalky soil tones. The wine comes across as classy in length and grip at the finish line.
Louis Roederer is one of France's most prestigious wine producers. The House has been making its flagship Brut Premier Champagne since 1776, and it continues to be the world-renowned producer's best-seller today.
Louis Roederer's Brut Premier is a wine for the sophisticated palate. It balances youthful fruitiness with vinous qualities to create a well-balanced drink that can be consumed at any time of day or night.
The lightweight, antique-colored bottles give it an old-world charm and make this champagne perfect for engraving on your wedding registry! It has the flavor of crisp yellow orchard fruit, Anjou pear, white peach, pastry cream, and bread, all molded into one exquisite taste sensation that leaves your mouth watering for more.
The Jean-Baptiste Adam Brut from Alsace has a beautiful and delicate flavor. It is the perfect wine for those who want something light, refreshing, and not too sweet.
The flavors of apple peach are wonderfully intense while also tempered by mineral notes that make it seem more like a bottle of expensive Champagne than just any old sparkling white wine from France!
Ideally, this would be paired with rabbit terrine, but even if you don't have anything special planned, you can always enjoy it on its own because there's nothing better to sip during or after dinner.
Best Rosé French Wines
When the sun's on its way out for good and cold breezes creep in, some people like to drink pink. Domaine de Triennes Rose from Provence does not disappoint with its pale coloring and delicate bouquet of strawberries, honeysuckle, and peach—little hints of sweet summer that smell almost too perfect.
But wait until you taste how sneaky it can be. Just when you think it might have gone flat on you, a trace of vanilla peeks through at the end on the palate. Subtle but natural complexity makes this wine an excellent choice for any meal.
The Louis Roederer Brut Rose Pink is a delicious pink wine that will make any occasion feel special. The 2014 vintage has an appealing gold tint and beautiful soft bubbles that are easy to drink out of the bottle with your favorite foods. This rosé's bouquet consists of elements reminiscent of fruity tarts that have been baked in a buttery crust.
A swirl of the glass and an aromatic complexity emerges. A medley of spice, warm cinnamon, and sweet peppers fills your nose with a tantalizing aroma while complex fruit flavors burst in your mouth. Ripe red plums dripping with sweetness will leave you craving more on every sip!
Taittinger's Cuvée Prestige is a bottle of supple, fruity Champagne made from the mixture of Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier grapes to create an aromatic wine with fine bubbles. The drink’s color ranges from cherry-pink to pinkish-orange, and it has tiny yet persistent bubbles that rise in delicate strands towards its surface.
With crispness on one end of its flavor spectrum and refreshing fruitiness on another, this bubbly will be perfect for any occasion. The Pinot fragrance combined with strawberries and raspberries creates an aroma that fills your nose like flowers on a warm summer day.
When you take your first sip, its ripe berry flavors fill up your mouth from tongue to cheek, making this one of the most flavorful wines around.
The wine's flavor is full and complex but not overpowering. Some fruity elements make the taste more refreshing than expected, almost tasting like sparkling fruit juice. The peppermint and grapefruit element adds an interesting twist to this nicely crafted concoction.
The smell is so intriguing and complex that you could get lost in the aromas for hours. The nose offers notes of exotic fruits like pomegranate, lychee, and guava with a delicate floral bouquet alongside soft hints of freshly picked cherry, raspberry, or wild strawberry.
It's these subtle spicy complexities (tonka bean) that make this a wine to remember! It is an excellent complement to Italian prosciutto or Parma ham and makes for the perfect starter paired with salmon.
France has a whole host of wines to offer, from dry reds and whites for people who like their drinks light or sweet for those with more discerning palates. With so many options available, there’s bound to be something that suits your taste buds!
Which French wine has intrigued you most? Let us know in the comments.