Provence Rosé Still Pouring Strong in the Export Market
In a year marked by turbulence and an overall decrease in exports of French wine by as much as 5% in volume, Provence witnessed exports increase by nearly 6% in volume, making it the wine region posting the greatest growth abroad. By comparison, Burgundy posted a 1.4% growth in the export market, and the Loire Valley showed a 1% growth.¹
Provence was the singular wine region in France to experience growth with a 1% increase in value.
Need I point out that this growth was driven by rosé, the wine that accounts for close to 90% of total wine production in this region? As much as I tout the exceptional whites and reds found in all nine appellations in Provence, this region is renowned for its rosés – justifiably so – and has long been considered the global gold standard for rosé. Keep reading here for this in-depth article in rosé exports from Provence.
AOCs (AOPs) in Provence
AOC – Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée (controlled geographic designation). The French labelling and quality control system established in 1905. The classification system applies to a wide variety of products, including butter, chicken, lentils and wine. In the case of wine, the AOC designation began in 1935, long after the classification of the Bordeaux Medoc region in 1855. Châteauneuf du Pape was the first AOC in France (1936).
AOP – Appellation d’Origine Protégée is the same as AOC, but applies to all EU countries.
There are several AOCs in Provence and the Rhone Valley and a few sub-appellations (*):
Côtes de Provence:
*Côtes de Provence Sainte Victoire
*Côtes de Provence Fréjus
*Côtes de Provence La Londe
*Côtes de Provence Pierrefeu
Coteaux Varois en Provence
Les Baux de Provence
Côtes du Rhône (South):
Provence and the Southern Rhone wines are typically created using assemblage techniques where varietals are fermented separately and only then blended under the scrutiny of master winemakers. This winemaking methodology allows the vintner more flexibility in years where one grape type’s growth and sugar production might be better (or worse) than another varietal.