Have you ever heard of Champagne?
Well, whatever you do, don't tell the locals in Aude!
Here, the drink everyone talks about - and drinks - is Blanquette de Limoux. For any self-respecting local, Champagne, for all its pomp and prestige, is nothing but a usurper!
Blanquette de Limoux was the world's first sparkling wine, produced by the Benedictine monks of Saint Hilaire as far back as in 1531, actually making it older than the sparkling Champagne that has gradually supplanted it.
Blanquette de Limoux was awarded 'Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée' status in 1938 in a 4,942-acre area of the whole AOC, a 19,768-acre expanse covering over 41 administrative communes and including 4 'terroir' wine areas.
Sparkling and straw coloured, it should not be higher than 7° proof, and imparts notes of fruit and spring flowers, making it the ideal accompaniment to local dishes and desserts.
The vineyards of Limoux span some 741,000 acres in the Languedoc-Roussillon region and Blanquette de Limoux is renowned for being the oldest wine in the world.© Olena Mykhaylova / 123RF
Its aroma offers hints of spring-like flavours, green apple, and honey. Try the medium-dry version to go with your desert.© GRAPHICOBSESSION
The conditions in the Languedoc-Roussillon region are particularly conducive to the production of white wines due to the Mediterranean climate.© Pablo Boris Debat / 123RF
Limoux wine comes in both red and white varieties. The red variety takes a particularly long time to produce.© Stephanie Watson
With its yellowish tinge, beautiful bubbles, and spring-like aromas, this wine is best enjoyed with good local ingredients. Our advice: Wait at least two years before drinking it.© Bela Hoche / 123RF