Do you find yourself staring at the winelist, hoping in vain for divine inspiration? Do you morosely wander the shelves at your local wine shop, pretending to know what you’re looking for? Well worry not, because Dark Rye is here to help! Presented for your consideration:  Nancy’s top 5 wine producing regions in the world. With this list as your guide you can’t go wrong! 

 

Rhône Valley, France

From the craggy, hillside vineyards in the north to the rocky, sun-soaked vineyards in the south, the beautiful landscape of the Rhone Valley is enough to leave one breathless. And in recent years, it’s been gaining worldwide attention for the myriad of wine styles coming out of the region. Although wine has been produced here for over 2000 years, the Rhone valley is currently a very exciting place to be as it’s undergoing a major transformation with winemakers breaking the mold and experimenting with different styles and techniques.

Burgundy, France 

Wine made from the two principal varietals planted in Burgundy, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, have long inspired winemakers throughout the globe with their elegance, finesse, and intricacy. Driving up the Route des Grands Crus in Burgundy, you’re eyes are struck with nothing but rolling, green vineyards on your left and right, while ahead are perfectly manicured villages in various shades of beige and brown.  Burgundy is a complex patchwork of small vineyards, with varying soil types, and without a doubt, the wines from here are some of the best expressions of terroir. 

  

Piedmont, Italy

Nebbiolo, the varietal found in classic wines of Barolo and Barbaresco wines, flourishes only in its native region of Piedmont, tucked away in the Northwest corner of Italy between France and Switzerland. Barbaresco and Barolo, known as ‘the wine of kings and the king of wine,’ are loved for their rich, robust, tannic wines that have serious staying power.  Nebbiolo might be the king, but its court is not to be missed; some of the other significant wines coming from the foggy region are Barbera, Dolcetto, Arneis, and Moscato, each impressing with its own distinct style and identity.

 

 Marlborough, New Zealand

Rugged and majestic, New Zealand is a land like no other. The wine here lives by the same code and is fresh, powerful and intense. There seems to be no stopping these trailblazing winemakers as the Sauvignon Blancs from the Marlborough have reached iconic heights with their signature racy, citrusy, zing. This region is a veritable force to be reckoned with. 

 

Columbia Valley, Washington

As the second largest wine producing state in America, Washington, to many, remains an elusive, mysterious, and often overshadowed wine region. This is changing, partially thanks to the Columbia Valley AVA, in Washington which humbles and thrills the palate with its stellar interpretations of classic French varietals. While they produce more red wines, specializing in fruity, yet structured Cabernet Sauvignons, Syrahs, and Merlots, the Columbia Valley white wines such as their Chardonnays and Sauvignon Blancs are shocking with their gripping acidity, crisp flavors and freshness that flourish in perfect harmony with each other.