If you asked most sommeliers and wine critics what the best-value wine region in France was, we'd bet a good number would pick the Languedoc.

It's big; the fourth largest region in France in fact. But a huge potential for volume doesn't always equate with quality.

That's how things once were here, but today it's a hotbed of exciting wines, made from top-flight vineyards.

It's the heritage of some fantastic old vine vineyards, clinging to the rocky, tough terrain, that produces the raw ingredients for some excellent wines. The local winemakers enthusiastically learnt new techniques, often from Kiwi and Australian interlopers, and sharpened up their cellar practices.

The result's wines that are clean, fresh and vibrant; almost surprisingly so. And value? One of the French wine regions it's a given.

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