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Top Producing Wine Regions of The World

Written by Madeline Puckette

Each year we discover more countries producing wine. For instance, did you know there are vineyards in the Gobi Desert?

There’s no doubt that up-and-coming wine regions are intriguing, but which are the top wine producing countries in the world?

Ready to have your mind blown? Just 10 countries are producing 80% of the wine on the planet. Your mind is blown. Let’s take a closer look at the top wine-producing regions of the world.

Source: International Trade Administration 2017 World Wine Production Report

Top Wine Regions of The World

The top 4 major wine regions of the world are France, Italy, U.S.A., and Spain. They produce just over half of all the wine in the world.

The top 4 wine countries make enough wine to fill 5,771 Olympic-sized swimming pools!

That’s a lot of wine… Olympic pool in Bejing.

1 Italy

Italy has beaten France since the last check-in on production, but both countries have experienced major shifts in their production over the past decade. Between 2011 and 2015, Italy ramped production up nearly 40%, reviving their wine industry that had been flagging for the previous decade.

Major Grapes Sangiovese, Montepulciano, Merlot, Trebbiano Toscano, Nero d’Avola, Barbera, Pinot Grigio, Prosecco, Nebbiolo

2 France

While France and Italy compete for the top wine production region of the world, they are also reducing wine production every year. France has lowered production by at least 11% since 2007.

Major Grapes: Merlot, Grenache, Trebbiano Toscano, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan, Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc, Pinot Noir, Gamay, Sauvignon Blanc

3 United States

90% of wine from the United States is from California. California is home to the world’s largest wine producer, Gallo, in Modesto, CA.

Major Grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Sauvignon Blanc

4 Spain

Spain is home to the largest vineyard acreage in the world. Despite this fact, Spain also has much lower wine yields than neighboring France and Italy, resulting in less total wine.

Major Grapes: Tempranillo, Airén, Garnacha, Monastrell, Bobal

5 Australia

Australia relies primarily on the wine export market. Since the US dollar has weakened, Australia is expanding its wine marketing in Hong Kong and Asia.

Major Grapes: Shiraz (Syrah), Chardonnay

6 Argentina

Argentina continues to grow its wine production year after year resulting in a massive growth rate, but relies on wine exports.

Major Grapes: Malbec, Bonarda, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon

7 China

Wine culture is relatively new in China but in a short period of time its grown to be the 5th largest wine consumer in the world.

Major Grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Carménère, Marselan

8 South Africa

South Africa has long been known for its Chenin Blanc and produces the largest volume of Brandy in the world.

Major Grapes: Chenin Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinotage, Chardonnay

9 Chile

Chile is proud of the red wine variety Carmenere, known as the ‘lost varietal’ of Bordeaux. Still, export markets demand traditional varieties.

Major Grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Carménère, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc

10 Germany

German wine is known for its aromatic white wines. German wines are exported primarily to the US and UK.

Major Grapes: Riesling, Müller-Thurgau


It’s useful to know what the most popular types of wine are in each of the top producing countries for two reasons: value and quality.

Finding Value & Finding Quality

Take a closer look at the regions above, including Germany, Italy, Australia, and Argentina. Each of these countries focus on a distinct wine variety. For instance, Spain produces the highest volume of Tempranillo in the world. Meaning Spain produces both the most value Tempranillo as well as the best Tempranillo in the world.

The next time you buy wine from these top regions focus on what their exceptional wines are. You are more likely to find something you’ll enjoy.

Curious about the #1 spot on this list? Of course! Italian wine is a powerhouse and there are delicious options for every palate. Jump into our Five Best Italian Wines for Beginners.


Written byMadeline Puckette

James Beard Award-winning author and Wine Communicator of the Year. I co-founded Wine Folly to help people learn about wine. @WineFolly

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