The Loire is France's longest river and vineyards run along its length. Red Wine White Wine Rosé Wine Fine Wine Port, Sherry & Dessert Wine Magnums Wine Accessories Vin de France POPULAR COUNTRIES. [10], The Muscadet region is located at the westernmost edge of the Loire Valley near the city of Nantes. Chinon and Bourgueil. [1] Among these different wine styles, Loire wines tend to exhibit characteristic fruitiness with fresh, crisp flavors-especially in their youth. The Muscadet wines from the Pays de la Loire are made from the Melon de Bourgogne grape and are known for their citrus and mineral notes. Loire Valley - The Loire is a tremendous region offering the wine lover great diversity. Sauvignon Blanc. The wines have a fruity aroma with sweet spices. The Vin de Pays du Jardin de la France refers to any varietally labeled wine, such as Chardonnay, that is produced in the region outside of an AOC designation. Cabernet Franc is an important red wine grape variety in the Anjou. Throughout the years it was known in the region under a variety of synonyms including Pineau de la Loire and Franc-blanc. Unlike Champagne which is made with Chardonnay, Pinot noir and Pinot Meunier, Saumur sparkling wine is based on the Chenin blanc grape. It is best known for its traditional-method sparkling wines made from Chenin Blanc, but also contains the very good red wine-producing region of Saumur Champigny, where the variety … Seraph Reserve Touraine Sauvignon Blanc 2019. For white wines the main grape is Chenin blanc but Sauvignon blanc and (to a smaller extent) Chardonnay is also planted. 100% Pinot Noir. Three French red wines to open in a couple of months 6 & 7. The Loire Valley Region is Best Known for its Fruity-style White Wine. "Pascal Reverdy makes this wine in homage to his brother Nicolas, who passed away in a vineyard accident in 2007. Cab Franc is the Loire’s signature red grape, and these four appellations form the core of red wine making in the Loire. [12], Historically the wineries of the Loire Valley have been small, family owned operations that do a lot of estate bottling. The Chinon AOC along the banks of the River Vienne mostly produces red wines with the cabernet franc as its primary grape. Saumur is an appellation in the Loire Valleycreated in 1936 for red,rose,and white wines from 31 communes around the town of that name.The Saumur Mousseux appellation was created for sparkling wines in 1976. Popularity of Loire Valley wines with sommeliers and wine writers has been growing steadily for the last ten years because for all their variety, Loire Valley wines share important characteristics that make them perfect for contemporary taste. Wines from appellations such as Chinon and Bourgueil are considered to be the benchmark for this distinctive red grape. The villages of Bourgueil, Chinon and Saumur are known for their Cabernet franc based wines that range from light and fruity in Saumur to rich and velvety in Chinon. This page was last edited on 29 December 2020, at 15:34. Meet Pinot "the OG" Noir. Despite its northerly position, the Loire Valley is a mosaic of different terroirs and climats. The two towns of Sancerre and Pouilly-sur-Loire (where Pouilly-Fumé is made) sit on opposite sides of the Loire river with Sancerre being about 10 miles (16 km) to the northwest of Pouilly. The Loire Valley is often divided into three sections. The Phylloxera epidemic of the 19th century altered that dynamic when many of the Pinot noir vineyards were wiped out by the louse. The Upper Loire includes the Sauvignon blanc dominated areas of Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé. At a Parisian café a few months ago, I asked the waiter if he had a red Sancerre. And we know just where to go to enjoy the finest examples of each and every one, so book your SmoothRed … The Loire's most famous reds, Chinon, Bourgueil and St-Nicolas de Bourgueil, are made to the same recipe as Saumur-Champigny, indeed Chinon is virtually an eastern extension of it. Pinot Meunier is a mutation of the Pinot Noir grape. Did the winemaker did that as a nod to Touraine-Orléans? And yes, Malbec comes from Cahors (Southwest France). The area includes 87 appellations under the Appellation d'origine contrôlée (AOC), Vin Délimité de Qualité Superieure (VDQS) and Vin de pays systems. The Wine Cellar Company. Smaller appellations in the region include-[2], The region was under the influence of the Duchy of Burgundy for most of its history which partly the reason why plantings were once heavily dominated by the Pinot noir grape. Some Sancerre vineyards have as many as 10,000 plants per hectare. Chenin Blanc (Pineau de la Loire) This is the Loire grape par excellence. This create wines that can be very cloudy and require decanting to remove sediments but also produces wines that can be fuller bodied and show extra dimensions of freshness. Sancerre, Loire Valley, France. [2] Some classic examples of Vouvray can even reach the levels of longevity commonly associated with Port. In the 17th century, Dutch wine merchants laid the foundation for the Muscadet style by encouraging the villagers of Nantes to plant the early ripening Melon de Bourgogne grape to use in the production of their brandewijn—distilled wine with brandy added to it. There are two generic designations that can be used across the whole of the Loire Valley. My three biggest take aways were 1.) While most Pinots are planted in the eastern stretch of Loire, some can be found in the Lower Loire, too (I KNOW!!!). Don't marginalize Merlot because she's a Loire minority, but whatever, she's kind of a big overall deal in France, no. Many of the better made examples come out of this period with their full palate of flavors and can continue to age well into 20 years. The wines out of the Loire Valley are overall pretty dry, crisp and great for … I am a sucker for the ones from the Upper Loire… must be something to do with the volcanos?! Varietal examples are rare, but do exist. Some ideas for wine and food pairing with Central-Loire Valley wines. Maybe I’ll save this question for the next time I visit. PRESS . [3], Winemaking in the Loire is characterised by a general avoidance of barrel ageing and malolactic fermentation. The Loire has long been famous for its classic Sauvignon Blanc, some of the world’s best. In his work the History of the Franks, Bishop Gregory of Tours wrote of the frequent plundering by the Bretons of the area's wine stocks. In areas where forests and hills protect the vineyards from cold winds, the aspects of vineyards allow for ample sunshine, and bodies of water regulate growing temperatures, we may find the perfect conditions for red grapes to ripen and transcend into brilliant and expressive wines. Skip to main content . [2], The Loire Valley has a high density of vine plantings with an average of 1,600-2,000 vines per acre (4,000-5,000 per hectare). In Ontario, grolleau can be found on some restaurant’s wine list. How is a wine region as emblematically north as the Loire Valley capable of producing serious red wines? ... Wine varietals . In the High Middle Ages, the wines of the Loire Valley were the most esteemed wines in England and France, even more prized than those from Bordeaux. For a long time, many people thought Cab Franc came from Bordeaux. They tend to go well with red meats, poultry, and light cheeses. Vineyard Location: This appellation encompasses twenty communes in Maine-et-Loire (28 for white Saumur), nine in Vienne, […] [2], The white wines of the Coteaux du Layon, Montlouis-sur-Loire, Savennières, and Vouvray are based on Chenin blanc and are known for their high acidity when young and ability to develop and age well. Discover the friendly, diversity, fresh and fruity wines of France and explore the region they come from. So folks, give her the attention she deserves. Muscadet- A generic appellation covering the whole of the Loire-Atlantique department. While there are still isolated batches of Pinot noir in the region, Sauvignon blanc is now the most heavily planted. The villages of Sancerre and Pouilly-sur-Loire are known for their crisp and herbaceous Sauvignon blancs. As Loire authority Richard Kelley MW described, “once tasted, never forgotten.” This feisty lady is so quintessentially Loire, she comes from the Loire and she never wanders outside of her hometown. At the time, Sancerre produced a famous red wine made mainly from Pinot Noir and exported via the Loire; this often featured in the royal chronicles of the time. [4] Due to its location and marginal climate, the overall quality of a vintage has a dramatic effect on the quality of the region's wines—more so than with other French wine regions. When grown properly (yield controlled, canopy managed, yada-yada), she can produce some expressive and fresh light reds. The 2015 version is … ⁠Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, two household grape varieties, are his progenies. Quick and Easy Guide to Loire wine. All red wines from Sancerre, Reuilly, and Menetou-Salon are 100% Pinot Noir. Saumur is the heart of the Loire wine business; most leading regional merchants have their offices in the area. The mid 1990s saw an increase in the number of négociant and co-operative to where now about half of Sancerre and almost 80% of Muscadet is bottled by a négociant or co-op. However the best made examples in top vintages can often live much longer. In addition to still wines, rosé, sparkling and dessert wines are also produced. By the 11th century the wines of Sancerre had a reputation across Europe for their high quality. Meet Pineau d'Aunis. [2], A characteristic of many Loire wines (both red and white) is the high acidity which highlights the fresh, crisp flavors of their youth only to go through a "dumb phase" between 2 and 5 years of age when the wines flavors are drastically toned down. [2] In the 19th century, the wines of the Chinon area were compared favorably by critics to the wines of Château Margaux and even today is considered some of the best expression of the Cabernet franc grape. While most of the production in this region is in the form of a white wine, there are some red wines produced in the Loire Valley and they are the second largest sparkling wine producer in France following Champagne. Having been destroyed by phylloxera at the end of the 19th century, the vineyards were replanted with Sauvignon, a grape particularly well-suited to the region’s soil and climate. [2], In addition to the main production grapes, several local grapes are also used to make wine in smaller quantities. Some of the Sauvignon blanc based wines like Sancerre buck this trend and instead stay more low key till their third year when they mature and develop their full assortment of flavors before they eventually fade around their 7-10th year. Did you know that the popular Pinot Gris (Grigio) is simply a mutation of the Pinot Grape?In Loire, Pinot Noir comes in many lively and sometimes rustic examples. Nor its rich earthy reds made from Cabernet Franc and Malbec. The climate can be very cool with spring time frost being a potential hazard for the vines. The Loire Valley wine region includes the French wine regions situated along the Loire River from the Muscadet region near the city of Nantes on the Atlantic coast to the region of Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé just southeast of the city of Orléans in north central France. WHITE / ReD / rosé WINES. [3], Archaeological evidence suggest that the Romans planted the first vineyards in the Loire Valley during their settlement of Gaul in the 1st century AD. The rosé wines are made from an assortment of Gamay, Pineau d'aunis, Pinot gris and Pinot noir. The St-Nicolas-de-Bourgueil area produces the lightest colored wines. Meet the 10 red grape varieties in the Loire Valley: the popular Cab Franc, Gamay, and Pinot Noir; blending partners such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Pinot Meunier. The Middle Loire is dominated by more Chenin blanc and Cabernet franc wines found in the regions around Touraine, Saumur, Chinon and Vouvray. During the harvest months rain can cause the grapes to be harvested under ripe but can also aid in the development of Botrytis cinerea for the region's dessert wines.[3]. 13.0%. But recent genetics studies are... 2. The Crémant de Loire which refers to any sparkling wine made according to the traditional method of Champagne. One of the best known producers in the region is Didier Dageneau who, until his death in 2008,[7] was an influential voice in the area advocating the reduction of yields and the use of organic viticulture. [3], The Loire Valley is often divided into three sections. I am a sucker for the ones from... 3. [2] The area has a continental climate that is influenced heavily by the Loire River and the Atlantic ocean at the western edge of the region. By the Middle Ages, the Loire was at the heart of France. Gamay Noir. When they conquered Gaul in the 1st Century AD, they recognized the climate and soil were perfect for vines and that the river made a convenient “roadway” to move goods throughout the empire. 10 Red Grape Varieties in the Loire Valley 1. In the High Middle Ages, the wines of the Loire Valley were the most esteemed wines in England and France, even more prized than those from Bordeaux. [2] The Loire Valley has a long history of winemaking dating back to the 1st century. In between are the regions of Anjou wine, Saumur, Bourgueil, Chinon, and Vouvray. The grapes are destemmed, receive a short “cold soak” and are fermented in oak fermenters and then aged in demi-muids for twelve months, with a maximum of twenty percent new oak used. Love it, or hate it, it is the … While 2020 will forever remain engraved in memories as the year of COVID-19, it will also be known in the wine world for its early harvests. Rich in the region’s famed tuffeau, this calcareous rock was quarried centuries ago, leaving perfect cellars for aging Saumur wines. Located in the most diverse wine … [5] Spread out across the Loire Valley are 87 appellations under the AOC, VDQS and Vin de Pays systems. For red wines the main grape is Cabernet franc with some smaller plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon, Gamay and Malbec. Press; Val de Loire Millésime 2018; Val de Loire Millésime 2019 ... Media Find all documents of Loire Valley Wines Videos, graphics, photos, docs, you can check all documents … These appellations border the Loire river and, in the case of Chinon, the Vienne, and are protected from cold north and east winds by large areas of forest. Like most of the vineyards of France, we can thank the Romans for getting things started. In recent times, pruning and canopy management have started to limit yields more effectively. Charming examples can also be found in Auvergne (Upper Loire). Wishlist + Favourites + £9.99-+ Add to basket. [5] While the competition is not so much of a focal point now, there are still some producers who release early bottlings of the wine around the same time as Beaujolais. Unlike Cabernet franc from warmer climates, Chinon are typically served slightly cooler than most red wine. The Lower Loire that leads to the mouth of the river's entrance to the Atlantic goes through the Muscadet region which is dominated by wines of the Melon de Bourgogne grape. ⁠. The area around Saumur-Champigny produces red wine based on the Cabernet franc grape that is similar in profile to the wines produced in St-Nicolas-de-Bourgueil. [5], The area around Chinon, Bourgueil and Saint-Nicolas-de-Bourgueil produces the majority of the Loire Valley's red wine based on the Cabernet franc grape—known in this areas as Breton. Cabernet Franc. Now cool is that? [4], Climatology from 1947 to 2008 - Angers, France, "Didier Dagueneau Dies in Aircraft Crash at 52", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Loire_Valley_(wine)&oldid=997001624, Short description is different from Wikidata, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. [5] The Chenin blanc grape has been planted in the region since at least 845 AD when it was planted at the Abbey of Glanfeuil. [2], The region around Vouvray, Montlouis-sur-Loire and Touraine has some of the most diverse plantings of all the Loire region and makes a wide variety of white, red and rosé wines. OG (Original Grape, haha..) is appropriate, because Pinot is an ancient berry and a progenitor of many other varieties like Chardonnay, Gamay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc, and Syrah, just to name a few.Her existence for over tow millenia had allowed for plenty of time to mutate. For a survey of Loire Valley reds, check out the lineup of wines produced at Domaine des Grandes Espérances, situated in the heart of Touraine. There is Gamay beyond Beaujolais, where the grape is the most known for. Read more. Red wine. Then, she plays a supporting role in the red blends in Anjou Village, Bourgueil, and Chinon, adding black fruits, acid, tannins, and structure to the local cuvées. ⁠”Cabernet" is derived from "carbon", meaning black... a nod to its dark berries. While the majority of production is white wine from the Chenin blanc, Sauvignon blanc and Melon de Bourgogne grapes, there are red wines made (especially around the Chinon region) from Cabernet franc. The wines from this region can achieve a nice purple color with notes of raspberry fruit and graphite. 2006 Domaine André Dezat Sancerre Rouge 12.5%vol, France (£13.95; Berry Bros & Rudd). Some of the higher quality wines are often labeled with the AOC designation Anjou-Villages. Impress your guests with your expert knowledge of the 'Garden of France' Overview: At 1,000km the Loire is the longest river valley in France, meandering through varied terrain that is reflected in the region’s broad range of wine styles and fantastic variety of cuisine. Now let's go snack on a Loire Pinot and don't forget to serve it slightly chilled. Pouilly-Fumé only produces white wines while Sancerre produces red, white and rosé wines. The Fumé is said to come from the silex flint interspersed with the limestone in the area that can give a smoky gunflint note to the wine. In riper vintages, a Loire Cabernet franc will develop aromas of raspberries and lead pencil shavings. The soil around the Touraine area is a variety of limestone with excellent drainage that is known as tuffeau which is the same material used to build many of the famous Loire Valley Châteaux. First impressions of the 2020 vintage 27-11-2020. Enter Code SPEND60 for 5% off orders over £60, or SPEND100 for 10% off orders over £100! There is also some plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Gamay, Malbec, Pineau d'aunis, and Pinot gris, Pinot noir. But let’s not forget the Loire Valley’s fine, fruity red wines made from Pinot Noir and Gamay. As we’ve already mentioned, … However some winemakers have begun experimenting with both. In the Loire Valley, it is the principal variety rosés of Touraine Noble-Joué and the reds/rosés of Orléans. The Spring to Loire wine tasting event was a blast. Despite the inference of "Muskiness" in its name, Muscadet is a neutral flavor wine and the Melon de Bourgogne grape has no relation to the Muscat family of grapes. The wines of the Chinon area are the softest and rich expression of the grape while the Bourgueil area produces more tannic and firm wines. First, Cabernet Sauvignon is the principal variety in Cabernet d’Anjou rosé. 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