: France

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

France in the far north east of the country, Moselle is a small aoc which, with Côtes de toul, constitutes what the French call their vins de l’est or ‘wines of the east’, the last remnants of what was once an important and flourishing Lorraine wine industry. Extensive vineyards around Metz supplied pinot noir grapes to Champagne in the 19th century and subsequently provided base wine for sekt when the region became German after the Franco-Prussian war of 1870. phylloxera arrived late here and the region was relatively unaffected until 1910. The poor-quality hybrids chosen for replanting, together with increasing industrialization (see railways) and the proximity of the First World War battlefields, hastened the decline of this wine region. White Auxerrois and Müller-Thurgau are the two most common vine varieties for these delicate, crisp, still wines, and varietal Pinot Gris and Müller-Thurgau are both permitted. Light reds and rosés are based on Pinot Noir with Gamay.