Cotes de Gascogne is a Vin de Pays classification of white, red or rose—many of which are excellent, and all of which reflect the best tradition of the local soil and talent of Gascon vine growers.
A Vins de Pays, or country wine, is basically a superior table wine in France. The Vin de Pays criteria are considerably stricter than those for the Vin de Table. Regulations apply to yield, production area, alcohol levels and varietals. Also, unlike Vin de Table, Vin de Pays wines may carry a vintage.
The most popular varietal grown for Gascony wine is Tannat; a high tannin grape often resulting in a fairly concentrated wine. Other Gascony wine varietals include Merlot, Cabernet, Malbec, Pacherenc, Ugni Blanc, Petit Manseng, Colombard, and Folle Blanche.
I highly recommend keeping an eye out for some of these whites as the heat of summer approaches. I had a Domaine de Menard Colombard/Sauvignon Gascogne Blanc the other day that had me wincing for a poolside table on a hot day. Seafood or a fresh fruit plate—your choice.