Provence WineZineTasteWines and Spirits of Provence

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 (*):

Provence:

Bandol
Cassis
Côtes de Provence:
*Côtes de Provence Sainte Victoire
*Côtes de Provence Fréjus
*Côtes de Provence La Londe
*Côtes de Provence Pierrefeu
Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence
Coteaux Varois en Provence
Les Baux de Provence
Palette
Bellet

Côtes du Rhône (South):

Beaumes de Venise
Cairanne
Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Côtes du Luberon
Côtes du Ventoux
Coteaux de Pierrevert
Grignan les Adhémar
Gigondas
Lirac
Tavel
Rasteau
Vacqueyras


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.

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Susan Newman Manfull

Susan Newman Manfull

It was love at first sight when my family and I arrived in the charming village of Lourmarin for a short vacation, nearly 20 years ago. We returned home to Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and the next thing I knew, we were planning a much longer sojourn in that village and making arrangements to enroll our daughter in the local school there. That led to buying a maison de village— actually two, then a courtyard, a parking spot, and a bergerie— in our favourite Provençal village where we (readily) adopted that certain joie de vivre, established dear friendships, and, to this day, endeavour to blend in with the crowd at Café Gaby.

We no longer own property in Lourmarin, but we continue to hang our hats there frequently and gather fodder for our souls and The Modern Trobaors and Provence WineZine. There is never a shortage.

The Modern Trobadors, conceived in 2008, is about all things Provence: its markets, hilltop villages, lavender, art, literature, culture, history, food, wine, and news. Provence WineZine, launched in August 2014, focuses on wines from Provence and the Southern Rhône Valley regions—with a special emphasis on Provence's world-renowned rosés—and the men and women who make them.

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