The different wine appellations

Scroll to navigate

With more than 3,000 French wines, France is the second-largest wine producing country in the world and boasts just under 400 wine appellations. Quality wines that meet specifications approved by decree of the French Ministry of Agriculture and the European Commission. So, how are wines classified? Maison Calvet explains the difference between the labels and their specific features depending on the wine region.

Wine appellations

  • IGP (Indication Géographique Protégée, or Protected Geographical Indication) wine is a French wine whose quality is recognised on a European level.
  • AOP wine stands for Appellation d’Origine Protégée (Protected Designation of Origin), which refers to the production standards for French wines, the specifications of which are drawn up by the French National Institute of Origin and Quality (INAO). The purpose of this appellation or designation is to protect a product according to its production methods and geographical origin.

List of wine appellations in the main French regions


With its exceptional terroir and famous Route des Vins, Alsace has 3 AOP labels with Alsace Grand Cru, Alsace and Crémant d’Alsace.


With an international reputation, the Bordeaux region is the largest vineyard area of all the wine appellations in France, with 65 AOPs in total. Bordeaux wine country is made up of 6 wine regions with 2 IGP labels. There are 3 regional appellations (Bordeaux, Bordeaux Supérieur and Crémant de Bordeaux), as well as sub-regional and municipal appellations.


Home to some peerless wines, Burgundy is renowned for the uniqueness of its wines, as well as their elegance and fruitiness. It stands out with 6 regional AOPs (Bourgogne, Bourgognealigoté, Bourgogne Mousseux, Coteaux Bourguignons, Bourgogne Passe-tout-grains and Crémant de Bourgogne) and 44 regional appellations, among them premiers crus and grands crus.


Famed for its Beaujolais Nouveau, the Beaujolais region has 12 AOP labels such as the AOP Beaujolais or the AOP Beaujolais Villages, as well as 2 IGP labels.

The Rhône

With its wide variety of soils, the Rhône valley has several wine appellations distributed across its geographical area. The vineyard area is divided into 3 wine regions (the northern Rhône, the southern Rhône and the Coteaux du Lyonnais) where there are 28 AOP appellations and 13 IGP labels.


The ancient birthplace of French winemaking, the Provence region is renowned for its rosés and its delicate wines, which are a wonderful match for the sensuality of the south. Often paired with Corsica, these two regions have 13 AOP labels and 10 IGP labels between them.

The Loire

With its magnificent châteaux, the Loire is an exceptional wine-producing area renowned for the finesse of its wines. The Loire is divided into 5 wine-producing regions and boasts 52 AOP wine appellations, as well as 8 IGP labels.

— Wednesday 27 December 2023 by Olivier