These are the definitions for the majority of terms you are going to find when you read French wine labels. Appellation – AOC defined area where the grapes were grown in. Mis en Bouteille – The wine was bottled at the chateau or domaine.
For example, while in America, it might be important to inform consumers that a wine was made from Cabernet Sauvignon.
It's true that in Britain we continue to drink more Australian wine than French, but our chums across the Channel do seem to have risen to the challenge from the New World - and from elsewhere in the Old - by producing some hugely enjoyable and very interesting stuff of late.
The Rhône Valley is hard to beat for reds of real character and value, while Languedoc-Roussillon and the more obscure appellations of the Loire, southwest France and Provence are home to some delightfully quirky and individual wines, made both from the classic varieties as well as from rediscovered and revitalised local ones.
Match it with creamy fish dishes or chicken and mushroom pie.
2) 2005 Château Barreyres, Haut-Médoc, Cru Bourgeois 13% vol (£8.99; Sainsbury's) As we all know, 2005 was a cracking year for red bordeaux and the big names were bought up long ago en primeur or remain prohibitively expensive.
That’s why it’s important to get a handle on how to read French wine labels.