France

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The Fine Wines Of France: Second only to Italy, France is the largest wine producing country in the world. Often times, French wines are the standard by which other wines are judged. For example, Bordeaux reds, also known as clarets, are always referenced when Cabernet Sauvignon or Cabernet blends are mentioned. Similarly, you could not talk about fine Pinot Noir or Chardonnay without also discussing the red and white wines of Burgundy. This quality is a byproduct of France's diverse climate and terrior which produce wines of unique style and flavor. The major French wine regions are Bordeaux, Burgundy, Loire, Alsace, Rhone and Champagne. And the grape varietals predominately used throughout France are also used throughout the world, sometimes in an effort to reproduce the elegance found in the wines of France. The major grape varietals, which are now international varietals, are: Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Syrah, Grenache, Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Chenin Blanc. Some great French wine producers are: Chateau Cheval Blanc, Chateau Palmer, Chateau Ducru-Beaucaillou, Chateau de la Maltroye, Paul Jaboulet Aine, Nicolas Potel, Domaine Christian Moreau Pere & Fils, Olivier Leflaive, Verget, Lucien Albrecht, Domaine Marcel Deiss, Pascal Jolivet, Chateau La Nerthe, Paul Avril, Chateau de Beaucastel and many other French wines.

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