France is one of the largest producers of wine in the world. Competition in volume and turnover for France is mainly Italy and Spain is a competition when it comes to hectares planted with vines. Wine culture probably originated in the area south of the Caucasus and in the eastern Anatolia. The first wine in France is due to Greek colonists from Asia in the 6th century Before Christ. The wine-growing culture of northern France and other parts of central and northwestern Europe was developed by the Romans. Today, Europe is by far the biggest wine producer. Italy and France are the main producing countries followed up by Spain.
Although the exception proves the rule, it can generally be said that the smaller the better the wine appellation. For example, wine with the AOC Bordeaux may come from the entire wine region of Bordeaux. The Bordeaux is divided into large regions such as Medoc. Within Haut-Médoc you will find the best wines called communal appellation such as Pauillac, Margaux and Saint-Estèphe. Then there is a hall of fame of classified wines, called grands crus. In Bordeaux, the official classification is established in 1855 and these were the best wines, this is based on the selling prices of the previous years of that time placed in five categories. The wines of the highest category are Premier Grand Cru. Examples: Château Latour, Château Lafite Rothschild, Chateau Haut Brion, Chateau Margaux and Chateau Mouton Rothschild. Ofcourse drinking such expensive wine needs to be served in a great wine glass, a shatterproof wine glass to make sure the wine tastes even better.
In Burgundy, the valuation is just the opposite: the vineyards are classified, and not the wine makers or châteaux. The highest rating is grand cru, while the premier cru is a classification less. At the official classification in Burgundy in 1861 by the Agricultural Committee of Beaune the classification influential work Histoire et Statistique de la Vigne des Grands Vins de la Côte-d’Or Dr Jean Lavalle 1855 is largely unchanged. The division in 1861 had three classes whose vineyards from the first class almost all grand crew were at the launch of the Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée in the thirties.
Now days, the wines of France are for mostly made of fresh grape juice. The only exception is the VIN de paille from Jura. In this case the grapes are harvested and spread on a layer of straw to dry. By drying, the concentration of sugar in the juice increases.