8 December 2016


The Vineyards of the Occitanie Region

Two Historic Viticultural Basins

Sud de France encompasses the Pays d’Oc, Roussillon and Languedoc vineyards. Recognized as one of the world’s most beautiful vineyards, the Languedoc-Roussillon is the perfect expression of Mediterranean-style wines, wines that tell a story, reveal a certain know-how and convey the landscapes where they were born. The “wine hunter” will surprise his friends with these South of France-scented discoveries; the wine lover will be won over by the personality of these eloquent wines.

Sud-Ouest is made up of the following basins: the Aveyronnais, the Tarnais, the Garonnais, the Valley of the Lot, the Gascon and finally, that of the Pyrenean Piedmont.

Situated between two mountain ranges – the Massif Central and the Pyrenees – but also between two bodies of water – the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean – the vines are subject to four different climatic influences. In the end, though, its wines have their own unique fruity character, whose freshness and liveliness contribute to the popularity of wines from Gascony. In the easternmost part of the region, the mountain influences give wines more ripe-fruit flavors.

The leading French Viticultural Region

First viticultural region in France in area (263 000 hectares or 649 610 acres) and in volume (14.8 million hectoliters or 164.4 million cases), the vineyards of Occitanie represent one-third of total French production and 5% of world production.

They are without question the richest in biodiversity, with three large geographical ensembles:

  • Mountains and high plateaus
  • Piedmonts and intermediate plateaus
  • Coastal plain

Occitanie is the only French region that benefits from four climatic influences: Mediterranean, Oceanic, Continental and Mountain. The region’s exceptional sunshine favors grape ripening, while the four great winds (Mistral, Tramontane, Marine and d’Autan) provide a natural protection against vine diseases.

With 51 AOP’s and 36 IGP’s in total over the 13 administrative districts (départements), Occitanie is the world’s number one vineyard in terms of quality. This signature territory offers a rich and varied range of wines: all three colors, unique aromatic diversity and excellent value for money.

Occitanie is also the largest organic vineyard in France, with 1,557 estates covering 23,303 hectares (57,558 acres) of vines, representing one-third of all French organic growing areas.