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France

Nearly synonymous with fine wine and all things epicurean ...

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Nearly synonymous with fine wine and all things epicurean, France has a culture of wine production and consumption that is deeply rooted in tradition. Many of the world’s most beloved grape varieties originated here, as did the concept of “terroir”—soil type, elevation, slope and mesoclimate combine to produce resulting wines that convey a sense of place. Accordingly, most French wine is labeled by geographical location, rather than grape variety. So a general understaning of which grapes correspond to which regions can be helpful in navigating all of the types of French wine. Some of the greatest wine regions in the world are here, including Bordeaux, Burgundy, the Rhône and Champagne, but each part of the country has its own specialties and strengths.

Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are the king and queen of Burgundy, producing elegant red and white wines with great acidity, the finest examples of which can age for decades. The same two grapes, along with Pinot Meunier, are used to make Champagne.

Of comparable renown is Bordeaux, focused on bold, structured red blends of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc including sometimes a small amount of Petit Verdot or Malbec. The primary white varieties of Bordeaux are Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon.

The northern Rhône Valley is responsible for single-varietal Syrah, while the south specializes in Grenache blends; Rhône's main white variety is Viognier.

Most of these grape varieties are planted throughout the country and beyond, extending their influence into other parts of Europe and New World appellations.

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    M. Chapoutier Hermitage Monier de la Sizeranne 2011
    Syrah/Shiraz from Hermitage, Rhone, France
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    Domaine de la Janasse Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2011
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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    Clos Saint-Jean Deus Ex Machina Chateauneuf-du-Pape (1.5 L Magnum) 2011
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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    Louis Latour Marsannay Blanc 2011
    Chardonnay from Marsannay, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Chateau Brown Blanc 2011
    Bordeaux White Blends from Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
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    Domaine de Marcoux Cotes-du-Rhone 2011
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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    Domaine de la Janasse Chateauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes 2011
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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    Delas Hermitage Les Bessards 2011
    Syrah/Shiraz from Hermitage, Rhone, France
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    Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes Roussanne 2011
    Roussanne from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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    Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage Blanc 2011
    Rhone White Blends from Hermitage, Rhone, France
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    Chateau de Saint Cosme Cote Rotie 2011
    Syrah/Shiraz from Cote Rotie, Rhone, France
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    Maison Roche de Bellene Nuits-Saint-Georges Aux Boudots Premier Cru 2011
    Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Chateau Brown 2011
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
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    M. Chapoutier Chateauneuf-du-Pape La Bernardine 2011
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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    Chanson Pere & Fils Beaune Clos des Mouches Premier Cru 2011
    Chardonnay from Beaune, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Jean-Louis Chave Selection Saint-Joseph White Celeste 2011
    Rhone White Blends from Saint-Joseph, Rhone, France
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    Louis Latour Pommard 2011
    Pinot Noir from Pommard, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Denis Mortet Gevrey-Chambertin Lavaux St-Jacques Premier Cru 2011
    Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    • D91
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    Domaine de la Janasse Chateauneuf-du-Pape (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2011
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
    • RP91
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    Chateau de Saint Cosme Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2011
    Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
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    Louis Latour Meursault Goutte d'Or 2011
    Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
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    Hecht & Bannier Bandol 2011
    Other Red Blends from Bandol, Provence, France
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    Chanson Pere & Fils Corton Vergennes Grand Cru 2011
    Chardonnay from Burgundy, France
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    Chateau Langoa Barton 2011
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St-Julien, Bordeaux, France
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    Jean-Francois Ganevat Cotes du Jura Les Chamois du Paradis 2011
    Chardonnay from Jura, France
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