Top 10 Best Wine Destinations in Europe

Wine, is a way of life! It is literally a culture whose history goes beyond the pages of books! Unlike your regular glass of other drinks, wine tasting is a process and a journey of its own. You cannot gulp it down in a go, it must be handled well and with grace.

The best part about a good wine is that it can be paired with refreshments of all sorts. Be it cheese, crispies or the gourmet meals, each blend is finely prepared to team it with a specific dish. That is what makes the whole journey rejuvenating.

Europe, has always been famous for its rich tastes which goes back to centuries. The best wine destinations in Europe are well known, not just for the quality of their wines but also for the methods employed to manufacture each and every type and kind of wine. There are estates, wine cellars and wineries which date back to the time when modernity hadn't yet dawned upon the world.

Here are the 10 best destinations for wine in Europe:

 1. Champagne

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Relish the local flavors which have seeped down from centuries in this part of France. Wine is more of a regular beverage for the folks here. The region is most famous for its pink wines, which used to be the drink of the French kings. Prepared with the skin of grapes, this wine is very light and extremely subtle on the palate, thus, wine is perfect for first timers.  

Famous for: Rosé des Riceys

Recommended to have with: Cakes and pastries

Best time to visit: March to June

Activities around: Flneries Champenoises (Champagne Walks)

 2. Tuscany

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A town which is dotted with hamlets that have chateaus producing wine since ages, Tuscany is the abode of the maroon hued red wines. The place has the distinct honor of receiving the DOCG, which is only given to the best quality Italian wines. The wines produced here range from fruity to smoked, with the crisp sweet flavor of berries. Some wines produced here are known to have burnt orange hues, which are commonly seen in wines which have matured over time in wooden barrels.

Famous for: Chianti

Recommended to have with: Pasta and Pizza

Best time to visit: April to May

Activities around: Arezzo, Antique Market

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 3. Milan

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Perhaps the coy romantic capital of the world, Milan is the belle you can literally get intoxicated on. Spread across the River Adda, the fashionable city of Milan is famous for its red wines which come from the Valtellina estates. The wine gets its states from the nurturing that it gets from the fresh mountain air, where the harvesting of the unique grape variety is done on the terraces. The perfect destination for a romantic recluse, you can sip on the dry red and white wines while you soak in the stunning landscape of the place.

Famous for: Lombardia

Recommended to have with: Meat, especially pork

Best time to visit: April to May

Activities around: Milano Food and Wine Festival

Recommended Itinerary for MilanMilan Itinerary 6 Days   

4. Rome

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Gladiator fights, dreamy monuments and the royal old lanes, one of the most ancient city of the world, Rome has seen it all. The wine making culture dates back to almost two thousand years here. The wines produced here are referred to as the uo;Golden Wine”, rightfully for its aroma, richness and color. The countryside wines find mention in the Roman literature as well. Named after the town of Frascati, this wine is light and crisp and leaves a subtle aftertaste. Almost exuding a floral blend, it is a vintage delight with a modern touch.

Famous for: Frascati

Recommended to have with: Meat, especially pork

Best time to visit: June to August

Activities around: Roma Incontra il Mondo (music festival)

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5. Florence

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Crowning the fame of the eccentric shorelines of Florence is the extravagant wine culture. The affability of the town towards wine is evident in its quality of wines, both red and white. From the street vendor to the fancy palace, wines sold here are par excellence. Florence produces the delectable sweet wine, thick in intensity and yet subtle in taste and hues, this wine will titillate the senses of the one with sweet tooth. The wine exudes aromas of honey, hazelnut and caramel. It stunningly laces itself to the sides of your glass and yet, the velvety texture bursts into fruity flavors of apricot and other tropical fruits. Mamma Mia!

Famous for: Vin Santo

Recommended to have with: Cheesecake with berries

Best time to visit: May to June

Activities around: Calcio Storico (Celebration of the patron saint)

6. Santorini

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Located in the elusive lands of pastels and florals, the relaxed town of Santorini is known for its exquisite wines. The wines derive their nature and aroma from the volcanic soil, the warmth of the glowing sun and the crispness of the sea. Santorini brings to you a concoction of wines, from red wine to bubbly white wines, which have a refreshing after effect. Produced mainly from assyrtiko grapes, these wines are exclusive to the world.

Famous for: Vinsanto

Recommended to have with: Blue Cheese and Dark Chocolate

Best time to visit: April to July

Activities around: Visit the Red Beach

7. Paris

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Touted rightfully as the most romantic and beautiful city on earth, Paris is the pride of the fine dine, gourmet food and wine tasting world. Unlike the other cities of the world, wine is treated as an essential accompaniment for all occasions in the city of Paris. Streamlined to the sophisticated nature of wines here, that also have a hipster streak to it, the wines of Paris range from unoaked to matured and fruity to thick. Paris is thus, the connoisseurs’ delight too.

Famous for: Chardonnay

Recommended to have with: Fish cakes and Salads

Best time to visit: March to June

Activities around: Burgundy and Loire Valley

 8. Lyon

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Revered as the uo;gastronomical capital of France”, Lyon is rich in its tradition of preparing wine. Right from the harvest, to the preparation and the specific methods of fermentation employed, it has the esteemed elan of presenting to you a range of wines. However, it is most famous for the luscious variety of its red wines which are fruity and leave a lingering supple tangy aftertaste.

Famous for: Pinot Noir

Recommended to have with: Grilled Salmon or Tuna

Best time to visit: April to July

Activities around: Fourvire Nights (Theatre Fest)

9. Madrid

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The city which is home to one of the best soccer teams in the world, Madrid, has a zeal and spirit for life like no other city. Be it the succulent nature of its appetite or its insatiable quest for art and culture, Madrid is a missy looking for fun all over. One can enjoy fantastic wines of all sorts, paired with the most satisfying gourmet delights, Madrid gives you a class apart experience with a hint of spunk in it. The wines can be exquisitely teamed with tapas, which is a spanish delicacy. One can relish the vintage wines which are preserved and matured for ages before consumption. At the same time, there are seasonal wines produced here too, which have a distinct fruity flavor and aroma to it.

Famous for: DeVinus

Recommended to have with: Cheese

Best time to visit: September to October

Activities around: Visit the gardens of La Granja de San Ildefonso

10. Bordeaux

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Last and the most prestigious of the lot, Bordeaux has rightfully earned the reputation of the most diverse spot for wine tasting. Every genre of wine, be it table wine or the best most expensive wines, Bordeaux produces all of it. There are extravagant tasting rooms, which double up as a magnificent collection of wines in cellars. Housed in estates, they are the honeypot for the flourishing wine tasting scene of the city. The Bordeaux wine is probably the most famous and reputed brand of wine in the world. They are diverse in their tastes, aromas, hues and prices as well. Though the original Bordeaux wines are exquisite in their mix, quite a few other blends of it are available in the world market too now, in an effort to rub off the esteem of its reputation.

Famous for: Bordeaux blends

Recommended to have with: Irish Cheese

Best time to visit: April to June

Activities around: Euroboat (Football Tournament)

So twirl, smell, sip, gulp and relish the richness of wine. For the finest of the lot begin with the sparkling glass!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
AKSHATA MISHRA AKSHATA MISHRA

You've got to follow your own calling.

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