The French are known for being passionate about wine, and it plays a big part in their culture and day-to-day life.
If you'd like nothing more than to sample the finest wines the country has to offer, then a getaway to the Vendee would be perfect.
The department has a long history in wine making, with the Romans thought to be the first ones to bring their wines over to the region and establish small vineyards.
At present, there are around 100 growers producing reds, whites and roses for local Vendeen restaurants, championing unique flavours and using different fragrances to provide a one-of-a-kind drinking experience.
The four main wine making territories in the Vendee are Pissotte, Vix, Brem and Mareuil, and together they are referred to as the Vins des Fiefs Vendeens. Over the years, they have built up a reputation for the fabulous varieties they produce, including pinot noir, gamay, cabernet franc and cabernet sauvignon.
Collectively, these regions have earned an AOC rating, demonstrating their high quality. Their focus is primarily to provide wines complementing local seafood dishes, so many of them are light, fruity and served chilled.
There is an abundance of restaurants to choose from where you can tuck into fabulous food accompanied by these nationally-recognised vinos. Before you order your food, ask the waiter which wine they'd recommend to go with that dish, and you'll find your dining experience is considerably heightened.
Whichever part of the Vendee you're visiting and whatever restaurants you eat out at, you can rest assured that plenty of passion has gone into producing your bottle of red or white and the flavours will be phenomenal.
There are some other local specialities that you should make it your aim to try during your break, such as Kamok, a liqueur made using roasted Arabica coffee beans, and Troussepinette, an aperitif containing blackthorn shoots.
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