Provence Wine Tours

Think of Provence and you no doubt conjure up images of endless blue skies, fields of lavendar, purple dusks with the sound of cicadas. The great port of Marseille, the Roman treasures that are Avignon, Arles, Aix-en-Provence. And your mental picture would be right, but missing the delightful wines of the region.

Provence wine tours

The climate here is undubitably Mediterranean with hot, dry summers. That influence together with the occasional visits of strong mistral winds give particularly interesting nuances to the wine. Rosés are still an important part of production, but reds are developing apace. The often rather rustic red grape varieties of carignan, grenache, cinsault, mourvedre and syrah are blended with great skill to give charming expressions of terroir: whether supple or robust, they are always aromatic. Whites are in the minority, but those produced in the north of the region are interesting.

Of particular note are the small coastal enclaves of Cassis for its perfumed whites and Bandol where the red mourvedre is king. Further east, in the hills above Nice, is the small and intriguing area of Bellet – whites from the local rolle grape with some chardonnay; rosés from braquet; reds from the rare folle noire.

In Provence it pays to be adventurous and go off the beaten track – with French Wine Tours as your trusty companion.

 Provence Wine Tour Basics

  • Roughly 770 kms south east of Paris
  • Vines planted from 6th century BC by Phoenicians
  • Wines much appreciated by French royalty over the centuries
  • Area devastated by phylloxera late 19th century
  • Bland rosés and mediocre winemaking of the 1950s and 60s now forgotten and forgiven: the area makes seriously good wine
  • Key tasting words: crisp, dry, strawberry, herbs, spice (rosés); dry, aromatic (whites)