Fantastic French Wineries That Offer Tastings and More

Anyone who is a fan of wine will want to be sure to visit a winery or two while vacationing in France. Whether you’re staying in Paris, the rolling hills of Bordeaux, or the Loire Valley–or just about anywhere else in this bountiful country–you can rest assured there is some fantastic–and fantastically affordable–wine nearby. It’s quite easy to find a superb bottle of wine for $15 or less, which means you’ll be tempted to not only drink a glass or two with dinner each evening, but you’ll certainly want to buy a few of your favorites to make the journey back home with you, or perhaps a few cases to have shipped directly. Consider these 3 lovely wineries for a tasting and tour while vacationing in France:

Chàteau Moncontour

No reservations are required at this historical winery that overlooks the famous Loire River and surrounding hills. Make a day of exploring the area and stop in at your own leisure for a tasting with your travel companion. The chàteau boasts an onsite museum with more than 3,000 items on display, which you can visit free of charge. Get information on their hours of operation at their official website.

Lynch-Bages Label / Arnauddevial / CC BY-SA 3.0

Lynch-Bages Label / Arnauddevial / CC BY-SA 3.0

Chàteau Lynch-Bages

Plan your visit well in advance–reservations are required, choosing between the standard 1-hour visit with 2 wine tastings or the enhanced “Esprit de Lynch-Bages” visit that features 5 tastings. Those who are here between May and October are in for an extra treat–each year during this time a contemporary artist is invited to display his or her artwork in the vat-house. The collections share a common inspiration in that each artist draws up on his or her experience with wine when creating the works. Admission is free for winery guests; find the details on planning a visit at their website.

Chàteau du Taillan

The most devoted wine enthusiasts would be wise to plan their trip to France based on the various activities offered by this impressive winery. Workshops focus on specific areas of wine making, such as blending and harvesting. The gourmet visit, as listed on their website, pairs wine tasting with a cheese sampling and tour of the cellars, while another option provides guests with a picnic basket filled with a baguette, camembert, paté, and other delicacies to enjoy with a glass of wine in the garden.

Burgundy France Wine Region / Megan Mallen / CC BY 2.0 via Flickr

Burgundy France Wine Region / Megan Mallen / CC BY 2.0 via Flickr

While Paris is the main attraction for many French visitors, don’t overlook the wonders of this country’s wine regions. Tastings seem to be increasingly popular, thanks to the demand presented by American travelers. And, lucky for you, a visit to these wineries, and so many more, doesn’t start and end with a tasting. Plan your visit accordingly and you may be able to tour the cellars or the vineyards themselves, take in an art show, or join a private tasting event.

Learn how to say “Another glass, please!” or “I’ll take a case of the 2012 Merlot” in French, be sure to contact us today. We would be honored to pair you with an expert instructor for private or small group lessons to teach you how to speak this beautiful language.

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