France has a long history of producing high quality wines, and because the country grows so many different types of grapes, even those with the most fickle palates can find something they will enjoy.
Chardonnays became popular in the U.S. in the 1990s. They can vary greatly in taste, but French Chardonnays are usually crisp and velvety. Others can have an oaky taste that comes from the barrels in which they are fermented. In general, they pair well with chicken and fish.
Sauvignon Blanc is sometimes referred to as Chenin Blanc, depending on where the wine was produced, and is the driest variety of French white wine. While its body is similar to Chardonnay, it differs in taste. Sauvignon Blanc is usually more acidic, with fruity and floral flavors. It is also versatile and can be paired with almost any meal.
Chablis is interesting because it is made from Chardonnay grapes but, because of differences in production techniques, tastes very little like wines known as “Chardonnays.” Chablis is a wine for those who prefer a sweeter taste and pairs well with shellfish and pork.
Many casual wine drinkers think every wine with bubbles in it is champagne, but most sparkling wines are carbonated varieties of grapes from around the world. Champagne is a specific variety produced from grapes found only in the Champagne region of France. It is more expensive than other sparkling wines, making it the perfect beverage for a celebratory toast.