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Sud de FranceSouth and South West France can be seen as the vast engine room of the French wine industry. But it’s not just the source of many of the huge-volume, inexpensive blends adorning the shelves of all wine retailers. It’s also home to a plethora of smaller, quality-conscious producers making hand-crafted wines from a mixture of classic and local indigenous grape varieties. Accordingly, these are regions that offer unrivalled diversity and value for money.

By Chris Hardy, Majestic Wine Buyer

Sud de FranceSud de France Languedoc-Roussillon

The umbrella brand name for the sizeable Languedoc-Roussillon region bordering Spain, characterised by fertile plains, the rugged Pyrenees and miles of  Mediterranean coastline. It’s an area with a rich historical heritage, exceptional natural environment and convivial Mediterranean lifestyle. Thanks to the creativity and skill of its people, all these factors shine through in the wines produced in this sunny region

Domaine Sainte Rose ‘Le Vent du Nord’ Roussanne Chardonnay 2008, PGI Pays d’OcDomaine Sainte Rose ‘Le Vent du Nord’ Roussanne Chardonnay 2008, PGI Pays d’Oc
6.99 or 5.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

Small quantities of authentic, affordable, hand-crafted family-made wines are Ruth and Charles Simpson’s pride and joy. This unusual blend has intense floral and honeysuckle aromas with hints of peach and melon, with a complex, rich, well-balanced palate.

Paul Mas Vermentino 2009, PGI Pays d’Oc New!Paul Mas Vermentino 2009, PGI Pays d’Oc
New!
7.99 or 5.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

From one of the leading lights of the Languedoc, this rich Vermentino is packed with tropical fruit and grapefruit characters, but balanced with refreshing acidity.

Domaine Sainte Rose ‘Les Derniers Cépages’ Mourvèdre Petit Verdot 2009, PGI Côtes de Thongue New!Domaine Sainte Rose ‘Les Derniers Cépages’ Mourvèdre Petit Verdot 2009, PGI Côtes de Thongue New!
7.99 or 6.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

This unique blend of two late-ripening varieties reached its zenith in the near-perfect climatic conditions in 2009, resulting in an almost opaque purple wine bursting with spicy black cherry and wild raspberry fruit, plus hints of rosemary and liquorice.

Château La Dournie 2008, Saint ChinianChâteau La Dournie 2008, Saint Chinian
7.99 or 6.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

From a relatively small domaine in the foothills of the Cévennes mountains, this Syrah-Grenache-Carignan blend exudes tapenade, nutmeg and black-cherry aromas. On the palate, dark berry fruits are complemented by mocha coffee and wild mint.

Domaine Haut-Lirou 2009, Pic Saint LoupDomaine Haut-Lirou 2009, Pic Saint Loup
8.99 or 6.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

This wine – a blend of 80% Syrah, 10% Grenache and 10% Mourvèdre – exhibits intense aromatics of violets, liquorice, wild herbs and spices, giving way to ripe, juicy dark berry fruits on the palate. This is all held together by supple tannins in a wine that won a Gold medal at the 2010 Decanter World Wine Awards.

See all our Sud de France Wines

South West France

France Sud Ouest LogoFamed for its douceur de vivre (sweetness of life) and birthplace of the French Paradox, this region was first cultivated by the Romans and had a flourishing wine trade long before vines were planted in Bordeaux. No other French region has as many local indigenous grape varieties planted alongside the classic varietals. Consequently, the South West’s wealth of diversity – from robust reds, through aromatic dry whites, to exquisite dessert wines – is unrivalled.

Protected Geographic IndicationGrand Héron Marc Ducournau 2009, PGI Côtes de GascogneGrand Héron Marc Ducournau 2009, PGI Côtes de Gascogne
5.99 or 4.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

Gascogny may well produce France’s best-value white wines: all refreshingly fruity and packed with grassy aromatics. 2009’s exceptional climate has given this example incredible aromatic intensity, with attractive grapefruit characters yet crisp, fresh acidity. Features in the 2010 Top 100 French PGI list.

Protected Geographic IndicationVallée Blanche Sauvignon Blanc 2008/09, PGI Côtes de GascogneVallée Blanche Sauvignon Blanc 2008/09, PGI Côtes de Gascogne
6.99 or 4.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

The region’s slightly cooler oceanic climate allows aromatic varietals to ripen more slowly over a longer growing season, adding complexity to the resulting wine. This great-value Sauvignon has a herbaceous, grassy nose, with freshly squeezed lime and gooseberries on the palate.

Protected Designation of OriginLes Hauts de Bergelle Rouge 2008, PDO Saint MontLes Hauts de Bergelle Rouge 2008, PDO Saint-Mont New!
6.99 or 5.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

This blend of 75% Tannat, 15% Pinenc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon shows concentrated dark berry characters with subtle spicy notes, silky tannins and mix of finesse and freshness on the finish. Perfect for anyone in search of regional authenticity; ideal with grilled red meats and stews.

Protected Designation of OriginLes Hauts de Bergelle Blanc 2008, PDO Saint MontLes Hauts de Bergelle Blanc 2008, PDO Saint-Mont New!
6.99 or 5.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

A white blend using indigenous local varietals (70% Gros Manseng, 20% Petit Courbu, 10% Arrufiac) with intense floral and fresh citrus notes, ripe pear flavours and just a hint of spice from the barrel fermentation. It’s not bone-dry, but has a tangy backbone of acidity with a mouth-wateringly crisp, fresh and long finish.

Protected Geographic IndicationDomaine de Pellehaut Chardonnay Fruit 2009, PGI Côtes de GascogneDomaine de Pellehaut Chardonnay Fruit 2009, PGI Côtes de Gascogne New!
9.99 or 7.99 when you buy 2 bottles*

Another winner in the 2010 Top 100 French PGI competition, part barrel-fermented and aged on fine lees for 6 months to enhance the expressive white flower aromas and vanilla richness. The delicate palate balances tropical stone fruit freshness with the roundness of the Chardonnay.

EU FlagMidi PyreneesSee all our wines from South West France

*All prices valid until 1st November 2010 unless otherwise stated.

4 thoughts on “Around the regions: Sud de France & South West France

  1. What a great selection of wines. Are you constantly striving to expand your portfolio from the Languedoc Roussillon and southwest?

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